Rules to protect homebuyers diluted
The Bombay High Court has upheld the constitutional validity of the Real Estate Regulation and Development (RERA) Act that promises to protect the interest of the homebuyers. Much to the relief of home buyers, the court has also made it clear that the law will be applicable to ongoing projects.
But the ground reality is not very rosy for homebuyers. While many states have not constituted a separate authority for proper implementation of the Act, many others have diluted the provisions of Central Act.
While the deadline for states to notify the rules by framing regulations was April 31, only six of them have created a separate body to enact the law. These states include Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Gujarat, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu.
Officials said while 23 states and Union Territories have notified RERA rules under the Act, 17 of them have created only an interim authority.
There are five such states which have drafted the rules, but not yet notified them. These include Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Tripura and West Bengal.
Every state is supposed to operate a separate website where builders can register their projects. The deadline for builders to register themselves was July 31. But many states have not even created the website.
AbhayUpadhyay, National Convener of ‘Fight for RERA’, a pan-India group, said, “RERA was meant for transparency. Through the website, a buyer can get full details of the projects and builders. But this is not happening. There are many states where builders have not registered yet,” he said.
Getting possessing of their houses is still an uphill task for buyers. Taking advantage of loopholes in the rules notified by states, builders have extended possession dates of ongoing projects by two to five years.
According to the Central RERA Act, builders have to furnish complete details of the project, along with its launch and delivery time. In case of ongoing projects, the law requires developers to give the original dates of launch and delivery.
Upadhyay said states like Telangana, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Karnataka and MP had diluted the Act. “For example, Telangana has said that projects commenced before January 2017 will be out of the purview of RERA. Similarly, states like UP and Haryana have said that if builder has applied for completion certificate, then the project would be out of RERA purview,” said Upadhyay.