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The National Buildings Organisation (NBO) was established in 1954 as an attached office under the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation (the then Ministry of Works and Housing) for technology transfer, experimentation, development and dissemination of housing statistics. In the context of formulation of Housing Policy and Programmes, study of socio-economic aspects of housing issues and the increased need for housing statistics, NBO was restructured in 1992. NBO was further restructured in March, 2006 with the revised mandate keeping in view the current requirements under the National Housing Policy, and various socio-economic and statistical functions connected with housing and building activities.

The mandate of the NBO in its restructured form is as follows: -

  • To collect, collate, validate, analyse, disseminate and publish the housing and building construction statistics.
  • To organize training programmes for the officers and staff of the State Government engaged in collection and dissemination of housing and building construction statistics.
  • To create and manage a documentation centre relating to housing, poverty, slums and infrastructure related statistics.
  • To coordinate with all the State Govts/Research Institutions/UNCHS/International Bodies etc. as being a nodal agency in the field to cater to the statistical needs of the planners, policy makers and research organization in the field of housing and related infrastructural facilities .
  • To conduct regular short term sample surveys in various pockets of the country to study the impact of the plan schemes, which are being run by the Ministry by utilizing the service of staff so employed on contractual basis. At least two such studies will be conducted in a year.
  • To undertake special socio-economic studies evaluating the impact of the plans, policies and programmes in the field of housing and infrastructure, as and when required, by the Ministry for which the additional funds will be provided by the Ministry.
NBO is primarily engaged in collection, collation, analysis and dissemination of housing and construction statistics with a view to have an effective country-wide system for this purpose. In addition, the Organisation coordinates activities relating to the information emanating from various sources, namely, the Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner, India, National Sample Survey Organisation and other concerned organisations. The NBO is the only organization in the Government of India, which is responsible for developing an authentic and reliable database on housing and building statistics. The statistics collected and disseminated by NBO is not only used in policy formulation but is also used by various research organizations in the field of housing. The information disseminated by NBO is also used and taken by international agencies as the authentic official statistics. NBO being the nodal agency in respect of housing statistics at the central level not only coordinates with state governments but also guides the State Government authorities in collection of housing statistics through its training programmes. National Buildings Organisation collects data on i) Current Housing and Building Construction Activity Statistics, both from public and private sectors, in the urban areas on annual basis; ii) quarterly Building Material Prices and Wages of Labour from Selected Centres spread all over the country; iii) Building Construction Cost Index for LIG houses constructed by PWD from various centres spread all over the country on quarterly basis, iv) Building Permits and Completion Certificates issued by the Municipalities having population of 100,000 and more on annual basis. The data so collected is tabulated and released through its various publications.

Role of NBO in JNNURM activities:
A Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission activity (JNNURM) was launched by Hon'ble Prime Minister of India on 3rd Dec, 2005 for 63 mission cities. Mission has got two sub mission viz, Urban Infrastructure and Governance which is looked after by Ministry of Urban Development and sub mission-II, Basic Services for Urban Poor, which is looked after by Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation. NBO has been entrusted with the following task under JNNURM:

  • To look after MIS cell for JNNURM ( including Data Centre and E-governance unit).
  • To act as a nodal agency for receipt of all projects reports under BSUP and IHSDP and getting them appraised by BMPTC, HUDCO, NBCC etc.
  • To coordinate all capacity building programmes concerning project preparation, appraisal and reforms pertaining to JNNURM training of Municipal Officers, implementing BSUP,IHSDP etc.
  • Coordination of Appraisal of DPRs and Reforms by Appraisal Agencies.
The NBO will work closely with organizations like NIC, YASHADA and other agencies.

NBO’s Role in filling the data gaps
The information on certain important indicators, which reflect on the quality of urban life, is still not available. Some of these indicators are availability of safe drinking water, woman headed households, liquid and solid waste generated/ treated and disposed off, housing destroyed by disaster, house price to income ratio, land price to income ratio, etc. The information on these indicators at cities level will not give an insight on the urban life but will also be helpful in making meaningful urban planning. NBO, suitably strengthened in terms of manpower and appropriate tools, can strive to bridge the data gaps by taking up appropriate studies to assess the existing scenario and / or start building up the data base in conjunction with the state governments.”