With the government intending to push the passage of Real Estate (Development and Regulation) Bill this week, the Cabinet is likely to approve the changes on Wednesday, which have been made following recommendations of the select committee.
Sources said that the housing ministry has incorporated almost all the amendments recommended by the panel so that there is hardly any scope of any political party to oppose the bill that is essential for protecting the interest of home buyers and other consumers. “We are hopeful of the bill going through since it’s people who are suffering as there is no mechanism or framework to protect them from exploitation or unfair trade practice by real estate players. The Cabinet approval to changes is mandatory before the revised bill is taken up for discussion,” said a government official.
The recommendations tat have been accommodated in the bill include the provision of parity in the interest payable by consumer and developer in case of any default by either. At present, while developers pay only 2-3% interest in case of their default, the consumers pays 16-18% for their default. The Rajya Sabha panel had said “the interest rate payable by the promoters as well as by allottees shall be same in eventuality of any default by either of them.”
The panel had also recommended that 50% of payments made by home buyers for a real estate project be kept in a separate Escrow account and used for that specific project only. Moreover, in addition to the provision of up to three years’ imprisonment proposed by the government, the committee had recommended imprisonment clause for a realtor failing to abide by the orders of the appellate tribunal.