Consumer organization calls for transparency in waiver of premiums

Mumbai consumer rights organization Grahak Panchayat (MGP) has written to housing regulator Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA) demanding an investigation into whether developers who took advantage of the 50% premium concession scheme Fungible FSIs paid the stamp duty on the apartment on behalf of the purchaser and passed on the benefit of the concession to the purchasers.

MGP Chairman, Shirish Deshpande, in his letter to MahaRERA Chief, Ajoy Mehta, dated January 31, said: “There was a specific condition imposed on developers/builders to bear the “full cost of stamp duty”. on behalf of homebuyers and produce certificates to that effect. It is however reported in a section of the media that although most of the developers/builders in the MMRDA region have opted for the program announced by the government, they have not passed on this benefit of the stamp duty exemption to the eligible buyers. He added that MGP believes in this possibility as this condition of developers/builders absorbing the cost of stamp duty on behalf of homebuyers has not been publicized enough and as such most homebuyers seem to ignore it.

Deshpande also submitted the Maharashtra government circulars dated 11th December 2019 and 23rd February 2021 along with the draft undertaking to be given by the developers to MHADA or relevant planning authority stating that the developer will undertakes to pay the full stamp duty. of potential buyers for the area for which a 50% premium reduction is granted.

The covenant also includes clauses that the developer will present homebuyers’ certificates showing that their stamp duty has been paid by the developer. The undertaking further specifies that the promoter will post a list of all stamp duty beneficiaries on the promoter’s website; and that the promoter will submit the list of beneficiaries to MahaRERA.

Deshpande said that under Section 35 of the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act (RERA), MahaRERA has the power to request information and investigate a complaint or suo moto to provide information or explanations to promoters or appoint a committee of inquiry to probe the affairs of any promoter. He also mentioned that under Section 37 of RERA, MahaRERA has the power to give directions to promoters from time to time, if deemed necessary.

Deshpande urged Mehta to order developers who have enjoyed the benefits of the premium concession scheme to provide information to MahaRERA on the names of beneficiary buyers in each of these projects, along with copies of their certificates. He also demanded that the authority request all such developers to disclose on their MahaRERA project registration pages that they availed of the 50% concession offered by the government and that no stamp duty is payable. by home buyers for this project.

“We hope that you will promptly take the indicated measures to protect the interests of a large number of home buyers who have apparently been denied the rightful exemption from stamp duty, in accordance with the plan of the said government,” Deshpande said in a statement. his letter.

The premium concession scheme has resulted in a considerable increase in revenue for the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation. In the budget document, the civic body revealed that from the initial revenue estimate of Rs 2,000 crore, it has been revised to Rs 14,750 crore, of which more than Rs 13,000 crore has already entered the budget. BMC chests by January 2022.

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Posted: Tuesday, February 8, 2022, 12:00 a.m. IST

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