‘Maha housing legislation not in public interest’

The Maharashtra Societies Welfare Association has opposed the proposed Maharashtra Housing Act, saying it was not in the public interest.

Mumbai: The Maharashtra Societies Welfare
Association has opposed the proposed Maharashtra Housing (Regulation and Development) Act, saying it was not in the
public interest.

The existing Maharashtra Ownership Flats Act, 1963
(MOFA) is in operation since 1964 and provisions on regulatory
authority and appellate tribunal can be included by amending
it, Ramesh S Prabhu, Chairman of the Association said.

"In MOFA, there is a provision of criminal
proceedings against the developer who cheats buyers. In the
proposed legislation, the provision of criminal proceedings
has been dropped which is not a good sign," he said.

Under section 11 of MOFA, the provision for granting
the conveyance of land and building in favour of the Society
within four months of its registration is provided. The
provision of deemed conveyance of land and building whether
layout, single plot or township is provided.

In the proposed bill, a layout plot has been defined
as a plot of land having an area of 1000 sq meters or more, he
said, adding the developer planning to benefit from increase
in FSI will not develop a small portion of the plot and delay
the conveyance.

The new law, instead of protecting the consumers, will
snatch away the buyer`s legitimate right of owning the land,
he said. "The proposed bill is not in the interest of public
at large," Prabhu said.

As per MOFA, only carpet area area can be sold and no
common areas can be sold, he added.

With the introduction of concepts like independent
area, restricted common area and utility area, developers will
start designating the open areas or free of FSI areas as
independent area, car parking area and utility area and will
sell them to flat purchasers, Prabhu said.

The proposed bill does not provide for making the list
of flats booked, the person who has booked the flats, the
price agreed upon and the amount due etc. on the regulator`s
website to maintain transparency, he said.

"The developer gets the access to website maintained
by regulator within 7 days of application even when the
projects are not approved. The developer is required to upload
duly approved plan within 72 hours. There is no accountability
of regulators also," Prabhu said.

In MOFA, only MHADA was excluded but in the proposed
law all special scheme development without properly defining
them are excluded such as SRA, repair board building, tenant
landlord, CIDCO, collector land and BMC. There is no level
playing field for government and private builders," he added.


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