The Centre will invite companies from across the world to showcase their construction techniques, and adopt the selected ones to build affordable houses for poor families in the country.
The move is in line with the government's push under the 'Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana' (PMAY) (Urban) project, which aims at providing 'pucca' houses to every poor family in the country by 2022.
"We will conduct a challenge for the construction sector. Global firms will come to India and demonstrate construction of houses at a minimum cost in minimum duration, keeping our requirements in mind," Housing and Urban Affairs Secretary D S Mishra said.
Mishra said the techniques of the selected demonstrators will be adopted in the upcoming housing projects of the government.
The government has set an ambitious target of constructing 12 lakh houses under PMAY (Urban) in the 2017-18 period, out of which only 1.49 lakh houses were built in 2016 -17, a senior government had said earlier.
The Centre seeks to construct 26 lakh houses in 2018-19, 26 lakh in 2019-20, 30 lakh in 2020-21 and 29.80 lakh in the 2021-22 period, the official said.
Addressing the event, Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant pitched for the use of technology in the affordable housing sector hasten construction.
"You cannot do affordable housing if you are constructing them in three years. The rate of interest is so high that it will never be affordable. Affordable houses need to be constructed in 3-4 months and that is possible with the help of technology," he said.
Stressing that there will be greater urbanisation in the next 4-5 decades in India than seen in the last 5,000 years, Kant advocated "innovative and sustainable urbanisation" as the country India faces various challenges such as scarcity of land, gas and water.
"We need to have extremely sustainable and innovative urbanisation which should become the model for the rest of the world...There are two challenges -- how do we use technology and compress the speed of construction," he said.