The Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA)
Introduction: Government of India enacted The Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 in order to establish the Real Estate Regulatory Authority for regulation and promotion of the real estate sector and to ensure sale of plot, apartment of building, as the case may be, or sale of real estate project, in an efficient and transparent manner and to protect the interest of consumers in the real estate sector and to establish an adjudicating mechanism for speedy dispute redressal and also to establish the Appellate Tribunal to hear appeals from the decisions, directions or orders of the Real Estate Regulatory Authority and the Adjudicating Officer and for matters connected therewith.
Every Promoter should register the real estate project and also Real Estate Agent should be registered before Real Estate Regulatory Authority. Thus, no promoter shall advertise, market, book, sell or offer for sale, or invite persons to purchase in any manner any plot, apartment or building, as the case may be, in any real estate project or part of it, in any planning area, without registering the real estate project with the Real Estate Regulatory Authority established under this Act.
Rights and Duties Of Allottees:
“Allottee” in relation to a real estate project, means the person to whom a plot, apartment or buildings, as the case may be, has been allotted, sold (whether as freehold or leasehold) or otherwise transferred by the promoter, and includes the person who subsequently acquires the said allotment through sale, transfer or otherwise but does not include a person to whom such plot, apartment or buildings, as the case may be, is given on rent. Allottes have some rights as well as duties, they are as follows-
(1) The allottee shall be entitled to obtain the information relating to sanctioned plans layout plans along with the specifications, approved by the competent authority and such other information as provided in this Act or the rules and regulations made thereunder or the agreement for sale signed with the promoter.
(2) The allottee shall be entitled to know stage-wise time schedule of completion of the project, including the provisions for water, sanitation, electricity and other amenities and services as agreed to between the promoter and the allottee in accordance with the terms and conditions of the agreement for sale.
(3) The allottee shall be entitled to claim the possession of apartment, plot or building, as the case may be, and the association of allottees shall be entitled to claim the possession of the common areas, as per the declaration given by the promoter.
(4) The allottee shall be entitled to claim the refund of amount paid along with interest at such rate as may be prescribed and compensation in the manner as provided under this Act, from the promoter, if the promoter fails to comply or is unable to give possession of the apartment, plot or building, as the case may be, in accordance with the terms of agreement for sale or due to discontinuance of his business as a developer on account of suspension or revocation of his registration under the provisions of this Act or the rules or regulations made thereunder.
(5) The allottee shall be entitled to have the necessary documents and plans, including that of common areas, after handing over the physical possession of the apartment or plot or building as the case may be, by the promoter.
(6) Every allottee, who has entered into an agreement or sale to take an apartment, plot or building as the case may be, shall be responsible to make necessary payments in the manner and within the time as specified in the said agreement for sale and shall pay at the proper time and place, the share of the registration charges, municipal taxes, water and electricity charges, maintenance charges, ground rent, and other charges, if any.
(7) The allottee shall be liable to pay interest, at such rate as may be prescribed, for any delay in payment towards any amount or charges to be paid.
(8) The obligations of the allottee and the liability towards interest may be reduced when mutually agreed to between the promoter and such allottee.
(9) Every allottee of the apartment, plot or building as the case may be, shall participate towards the formation of an association or society or cooperative society of the allottees, or a federation of the same.
(10) Every allottee shall take physical possession of the apartment, plot or building as the case may be, within a period of two months of the occupancy certificate issued for the said apartment, plot or buildings the case may be.
(11) Every allottee shall participate towards registration of the conveyance deed of the apartment, plot or building, as the case may be.
RERA: According to the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, the appropriate Government shall, within a period of one year from the date of coming into force of this Act, by notification, establish an Authority to be known as the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) to exercise the powers conferred on it and to perform the functions assigned to it under this Act. Provided that the appropriate Government of two or more States or Union territories may, if it deems fit, establish one single Authority or more than one Authority. Also Provided that, until the establishment of a Regulatory Authority, the appropriate Government shall, by order, designate any Regulatory Authority or any officer preferably the Secretary of the department dealing with Housing, as the Regulatory Authority for the purposes under this Act. The Authority shall consist of a Chairperson and not less than two whole time Members to be appointed by the appropriate Government. The Authority shall be a body corporate by the name aforesaid having perpetual succession and a common seal, with the power, subject to the provisions of this Act, to acquire, hold and dispose of property, both movable and immovable, and to contract, and shall, by the said name, sue or be sued.
Adjudicating Officer: For the purpose of adjudging compensation, the Authority shall appoint in consultation with the appropriate Government one or more judicial officer as deemed necessary, who is or has been a District Judge to be an adjudicating officer for holding an inquiry in the prescribed manner, after giving any person concerned a reasonable opportunity of being heard. Provided that any person whose complaint is pending before the Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum or the Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission or the National Consumer Redressal Commission, established under section 9 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986, on or before the commencement of this Act he may, with the permission of such Forum or Commission, as the case may be, withdraw the complaint pending before it and file an application before the adjudicating officer under this Act. The application for adjudging compensation, shall be dealt with by the adjudicating officer as expeditiously as possible and dispose of the same within a period of sixty days from the date of receipt of the application.
Functions of the RERA: The Authority shall in order to facilitate the growth and promotion of a healthy, transparent, efficient and competitive real estate sector make recommendations to the appropriate Government of the competent authority, as the case maybe, on,—
(a) protection of interest of the allottees, promoter and real estate agent;
(b) creation of a single window system for ensuring time bound project approvals and clearances for timely completion of the project;
(c) creation of a transparent and robust grievance redressal mechanism against acts of ommission and commission of competent authorities and their officials;
(d) measures to encourage investment in the real estate sector including measures to increase financial assistance to affordable housing segment;
(e) measures to encourage construction of environmentally sustainable and affordable housing, promoting standardization and use of appropriate construction materials, fixtures, fittings and construction techniques;
(f) measures to encourage grading of projects on various parameters of development including grading of promoters;
(g) measures to facilitate amicable conciliation of disputes between the promoters and the allottees through dispute settlement forums set up by the consumer or promoter associations;
(h) measures to facilitate digitization of land records and system towards conclusive property titles with title guarantee;
(i) to render advice to the appropriate Government in matters relating to the development of real estate sector;
(j) any other issue that the Authority may think necessary for the promotion of the real estate sector.
The functions of the Authority shall include-
(a) to register and regulate real estate projects and real estate agents registered under this Act;
(b) to publish and maintain a website of records, for public viewing of all real estate projects for which registration has been given, with such details as may be prescribed, including information provided in the application for which registration has been granted;
(c) to maintain a database, on its website, for public viewing and enter the names and photographs of promoters as defaulters including the project details, registration for which has been revoked or have been penalised under this Act, with reasons therefor, for access to the general public;
(d) to maintain a database, on its website, for public viewing and enter the names and photograhps of real estate agents who have applied and registered under this Act, with such details as may be prescribed, including those whose registration has been rejected or revoked;
(e) to fix through regulations for each areas under its jurisdiction the standard fees to be levied on the allottees or the promoter or the real estate agent, as the case may be;
(f) to ensure compliance of the obligations cast upon the promoters, the allottees and the real estate agents under this Act and the rules and regulations made there under;
(g) to ensure compliance of its regulations or orders or directions made in exercise of its powers under this Act;
(h) to perform such other functions as may be entrusted to the Authority by the appropriate Government as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this Act.
Appeals: Any person aggrieved by any direction or decision or order made by the Authority or by an adjudicating officer under this Act may prefer an appeal before the Appellate Tribunal having jusrisdiction over the matter: Provided that where a promoter files an appeal with the Appellate Tribunal is shall not be entertatined without the promoter first having deposited with the Appellate Tribunal atleast thiry percent of the penalty or such higher percentage as may be determined by the Appellate Tribunal or the total amount to be paid to the allottee including interest and compensation imposed on him if any or with both, as the case may be before the said appeal is heard.
High Court: Any person aggrieved by any decision or order of the Appellate Tribunal, may, file an appeal to the High Court, within a period of sixty days from the date of communication of the decision or order of the Appellate Tribunal, to him, on any one or more of the grounds specified in section 100 of the Code of Civil Procedure, 1908: Provided that the High Court may entertain the appeal after the expiry of the said period of sixty days, if it is satisfied that the appellant was prevented by sufficient cause from preferring the appeal in time. No appeal shall lie against any decision or order made by the Appellate Tribunal with the consent of the parties.
Execution: Every order made by the Appellate Tribunal under this Act shall be executable by the Appellate Tribunal as a decree of civil court, and for this purpose, the Appellate Tribunal shall have all the powers of a civil court.
Dr. Sailaja. Petikam, Assistant Professor, M.R.V.R.G.R.Law College, Vizianagram