Consumer body writes to Maharashtra CM proposing changes in Apartment Act



   Consumer body Akhil Bharatiya Grahak Panchayat has written to Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis, proposing changes in the Apartment Act, 1970, on the ground that it has been frequently violated by developers.

   Akhil Bharatiya Grahak Panchayat President Vijay Sagar said in the letter that the amendments could be taken up in the Assembly session in November.

   The association said complaints related to registration of apartments were galore. “There are instances of builders registering only 5-6 apartment deeds even as there are over 100 flats in a units. This is not allowing formation of the society in violation of the consumers’ right,” Sagar said in the letter.

   The Apartment Act was introduced in 1970 for small buildings and not for big projects. The association said it was receiving complaints from several consumers that their respective builders have not ensured apartment deeds of 100% flat owners.

   Sagar said the Akhil Bharatiya Grahak Panchayat recently conducted a discussion on the Apartment Act with experts sharing their views. he said the Apartment Act was brought in 1970 for limited use as construction was then a limited activity and no society could be formed.

   “At present, many builders are misusing it to obstruct formation of a society,” Sagar said, adding that the several builders were illegally selling top terraces and open land to anybody. “The consumers have the right to form a society, but they are being denied of it. Cooperative officers are also supporting such actions,” he said.

   The consumer body said under Maharashtra Ownership Flats Act (MOFA) and Real Estate Regulation and Development Act (RERA), there is a provision that the first choice has to be given to the developers to form society or apartment or company. They alleged that the developers were taking its advantage and were mostly opting for apartments instead of formation of society.

   The Pune District Cooperative Federation is set to form panels comprising architects, advocates, chartered accountants and certified auditors associated with the cooperative housing society and cooperative departments to help in redevelopment projects.

   With nearly 7,000 housing projects in the district lined up for redevelopment and many more expressing interest, the federation is set to have independent panels to help the societies forward the redevelopment plans. Pune has around 16,000 registered cooperative housing societies, and many of these are unregistered.

   At present, the state has around 1 lakh housing societies and 40,000 of these are likely to go for redevelopment. In Mumbai, over 20,000 housing societies can opt for redevelopment.

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source: Economic Times

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