The state government may consider bringing smaller residential developments under the ambit of the West Bengal Real Estate Regulatory Authority (WBRERA) or introduce a separate legislation to regulate these developments.
Chief minister Mamata Banerjee has asked the housing department to consider the proposal so that homebuyers who are currently not covered under WBRERA also get some protection.
Speaking at the interactive session on Wednesday, Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Association of India (West Bengal) president Sushil Mohta raised the issue of small-time local promoters bringing disrepute to the trade by cheating homebuyers who did not have any protection unlike larger developments that were under the ambit of WBRERA.
“RERA is applicable to any project on 7 cottah or a minimum of eight units. Projects that are smaller than this, and there are many such developments in every neighbourhood, there is no regulation to stop the builders from not meeting their commitments. Hence, there are instances of developers handing over buildings without completion certificate (CC), or selling the same unit to more than one buyer. We wanted the government to step in and had given a draft proposal to the housing department on March 2 and raised the issue at the meeting with the CM,” Mohta said.
Banerjee was quick to respond to the issue and said she had also received several complaints of people being harrassed by small-time promoters. She has asked housing minister Aroop Biswas to do something to protect the interest of homebuyers and prevent them from being cheated by unscrupulous promoters.
Credai has proposed that the ambit of regulation be increased to include projects on more than 3 cottah. That would bring projects with four to seven apartments under the purview of regulations.
“The state government cannot relax the RERA guidelines but it can make it more stringent. While most of the large developers, including those affiliated with Credai, are compliant with regulations, the smaller developers who are not accountable tend to flout rules and bring a bad name to the industry,” Mohta added.