CPWD to outsource upkeep of 65,000 government houses in Delhi; will cut down expenses by almost 50%.
According to a study done by housing and urban development ministry, more than half of the employees of Central Public Works Department (CPWD) are engaged in works involving only 20% of its annual spending. Realising that most of these workforce are engaged in maintenance works, the agency will now outsource the maintenance of government buildings and housing complexes, which will cut down expenses by almost 50%.
To begin with the outsourcing will be taken up in Delhi, which has over 50% share of the entire housing pool across the country. Moreover, most of the government buildings built and maintained by CPWD are located in the national capital. Housing secretary Durga Shanker Mishra has reportedly directed CPWD officials to identify complexes where this initiative can start. This will ensure better and quicker service since the payments to private players will be linked to performance.
CPWD has more than 21,000 employees and over 16,000 of them are engaged primarily in maintenance work. The country’s largest construction body maintains about 1.3 lakh government houses across the country and Delhi has about 65,000 government accommodations.
While ruling out the need for its corporatisation, which a committee of secretaries had recommended, the government sponsored report by Ernst & Young has recommended that CPWD can be made more efficient by bringing in changes in its organisation, functioning and empowering field officers.
The report has recommended that in place of the present eight levels of processing and decision making, there should be two or three layers by categorising projects into small, medium and large.