NEW DELHI: Intense lobbying has started within a government-appointed panel to bar homebuyers - under the guise of "removing difficulties" for effective enforcement of the real estate regulation law, RERA - from approaching consumer forums and National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT) against erring builders.
Members of the panel include real estate regulators appointed by state governments, officials from the housing ministry as well as representatives of builders and consumers. Sources said that in Tuesday's meeting, while some members, including real estate regulators, pushed for blocking the provision of consumer forums taking up disputes relating to the real estate sector permanently, they also suggested that RERA authorities may be given a chance to resolve disputes within six months before invoking insolvency proceedings against builders. They also favoured changing a section in the law that stipulates extension of registration of projects to a maximum of one year beyond the scheduled date of completion.
The government had amended the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC) to include homebuyers as financial creditors so that they can approach NCLT against erring builders. Union housing minister Hardeep Singh Puri has maintained in public forums that no provision in the law will be diluted that can impact homebuyers adversely.
However, in the four regional workshops organised by the housing ministry to identify "difficulties", some real estate regulators have openly batted for changes, according to the minutes of meetings available on the ministry's website.