Government constitutes committee to look into difficulties faced in implementing RERA

The government has constituted a committee to examine the difficulties faced in giving effect to provisions of the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act 2016 and to suggest suitable measures for removing them, a top official said on December 31.

The first meeting of the committee will be held on January 3, 2019. “It will hopefully be in a position to finalise the recommendations before April 2019,” he said.

The decision to form the committee comes after four RERA workshops were organised in Pune, Chennai, Delhi and Ranchi where stakeholders, including home buyers, had given suggestions for effective implementation of the Real Estate Regulatory Act (RERA).

“The ministry has formed a committee under its joint secretary Shiv Das Meena. The panel will look into the suggestions received at the four workshops held on RERA and then submit its recommendations to the ministry. The committee will also consider whether there’s a need for changes under removal of difficulties of the central law’s clause,” secretary, housing and urban affairs ministry Durga Shanker Mishra told reporters.

The committee comprises Shiv Das Meena, additional secretary, ministry of housing and urban affairs; Justice B Rajendran, chairman, Real Estate Appellate Tribunal, Tamil Nadu; Gautam Chatterjee, chairman, Real Estate Regulatory Authority, Maharashtra; Anthony De Sa, chairman, Real Estate Regulatory Authority, government of Madhya Pradesh; Lt. Gen (Retd) S K Bahri, PVSM, chairman, Federation of Apartments Owners Association. (FAOA); Abhay Upadhyay, President, Forum for People’s Collective Efforts (FPCE); Niranjan Hiranandani, president, National Real Estate Development Council (NAREDCO); Getambar Anand, chairman, Confederation of Real Estate Developers Associations of lndia (CREDAI); Ravi Varma, chairman, National Association of Realtors – lndia (NAR-INDlA), Gurgaon, Haryana and Anupam Mishra, economic advisor, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.

Section 91 of RERA provides that in case any difficulty arises in giving effect to the provisions of this Act, the Central Government may, by order, published in the official Gazette, (within two years of the commencement of the Act) make such provisions not inconsistent with the provisions of this Act as may appear to be necessary for removing the difficulty.

The Committee would examine various suggestions and also the inputs received so far in four regional workshops organised by the ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs with regard to the difficulties faced in giving effect to the provisions of RERA, and suggest suitable measures to remove the difficulties in smooth and effective implementation of RERA, sources said.

ln addition to this, the committee may also advice the way forward in relation to institutional arrangements and suggestions with regard to state governments pertaining to implementation of the provisions of RERA. The committee is expected to submit its report by January 15, 2019, sources said.

Home buyers have expressed reservations regarding any amendment in RERA at this stage since it is yet to be fully implemented across India.  “We feel that enabling section 91 has expired which empowers the Central Government to carry out minor amendment since it was notified on  May 1, 2016 and was valid for only two years. However, if its still available as per any legal opinion sought by ministry then we sincerely hope that only minor tweaking is done to facilitate proper implementation of the Act,” says Abhay Upadhyay, President, Forum for People’s Collective Efforts (FPCE).

Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 (RERA) was passed by the Parliament in March, 2016. As many as 28 states and union territories have notified rules under RERA except Jammu & Kashmir (as RERA is not applicable there), six North Eastern states (Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim) and West Bengal has enacted its own Act I.e. Housing & Industry Regulation Act (HIRA).

As many as 28 states/UTs have set up Real Estate Regulatory Authority (Regular – 15, Interim – 13). As many as 21 states/UTs have set up Real Estate Appellate Tribunal (Regular -09, Interim – 12). Regulatory Authorities of 23 states/UTs have operationalised their websites under the provisions of RERA. As many as 34,893 real estate projects and 27,073 real estate agents have registered under RERA across the country.