Realty Bill Must Cover All Stakeholders: CREDAI

Terming Real Estate Regulatory Bill as a populist measure, realtors' body CREDAI (Confederation of Real Estate Developers Association of India) on Wednesday said the proposed law should govern all stakeholders of the industry and not only the developers.

The Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Bill, to be introduced in the next session of Parliament, will further increase the cost of development and delay projects, the association said.

"We want a regulator. But like regulators in other sectors such as telecom and insurance, it should govern all the stakeholders," CREDAI chairman Lalit Kumar Jain said at an Assocham conference.

The planning authorities, banks and other government authorities do not come under this legislation, he added. "It (the Bill) is a populist measure that will please consumers. Bring regulator with proper design and understanding of business," Jain said.

He noted that developers already have to take a number of approvals from various government authorities that take anywhere between 6-18 months and now they would have to register their projects with regulators.

Jain also feared that "now those developers who are not politically aligned, they will have to politically align".

Assocham released a report 'Regulatory Issues and Clearance for Real Estate Sector' jointly with global property consultant Cushman & Wakefield (C&W). The report welcomed the government's move to regulate the sector.

"Besides safeguarding the buyers' interest and bringing credibility to the developer community, the Real Estate Regulatory Bill is also likely to attract investments from domestic and international funds that have harboured scepticism towards investing in Indian real estate largely on account of lack of regulation," the Assocham-C&W report said.

However, it said the need for single-window clearances in the shortest possible time has become pressing.

The Bill provides for setting up a regulator for the real estate sector and has provisions like a jail term of up to three years for developers who commit offences like putting up misleading advertisements about projects repeatedly.

It also intends to make it mandatory for developers to launch projects only after acquiring all statutory clearances from relevant authorities.