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Monday, May 30, 2016

Which way Eknath Khadse is heading , Manohar Joshi or Chagan Bhujbal ?

Forget loopholes in the  process of land acquisition and other ambiguities. As guardian of government lands in Maharashtra,  it was  Ekanath Khadse's duty to protect the interest of the state and not to allow anybody to grab the land under the garb of sundry excuses. As per Indian express  days before his family members bought a three-acre plot in Bhosari near Pune from a private party, Maharashtra Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse held a meeting with officials from the Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) and the revenue department at which the compensation to be given to the original owner under the state’s Land Acquisition Act was discussed. The way things took place in last few months in this case is nothing but a clear case of  corruption, underhand dealing , misuse of power and abuse of court procedure.


 Khadse had purchased three-acre land in Bhosari for a throwaway price at approximately Rs 3.75 crore from the original owner in the name of his wife Mandakini and son-in-law Girish Chaudhary. The market value of the land was Rs 40 crore. While executing the document of this deal several sections of the registration act have been violated by the Minister , his family and officials working under Minister.

The land Khadse has purchased belongs to MIDC and consists of open space and industrial plots that MIDC has leased to some Industries 40 years back. So the question of using this land for any other purpose doesn't arise at all. There may be doubt about whether or not acquisition process had been completed or not. However , in any case Khadse was not supposed to purchase this land and claim for the compensation . This is nothing but a misuse of power.


The way khadse is defending his action, in this case, there is no doubt he is going to land in trouble in next few days.The  only question is, which way he his heading former chief minister of Maharastra Manohar Joshi or former deputy chief minister Chagan Bhujbal ?

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Friday, May 6, 2016

Builders and bankers cheating government and buyers in Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana

Affordable housing is the buzzword since last many years in India. Government floated many schemes under this name . IT also  provided lot of concessions , subsidies and incentives to flat buyers as well as builders. However none of those schemes could provide benefits of  schemes to real needy persons. Because there was no control or authorities to check whether beneficiaries of such schemes were genuine or fake. Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana ( PMAY) may achieve same fate if proper care is not taken in its early stages. In PMAY also government has given subsidies to flat buyers and  builders.


Photo courtesy apherald.com

To make available homes to really genuine beneficiaries, the government has put some conditions under PMAY guidelines. There are four schemes under PMAY.  However sine last few months builders are advertising about  only credit linked subsidy  scheme (CLSS ) . Most important factor of  CLSS  is that it is applicable to 4041 statutory towns only . And to avail benefits of CLSS beneficiary must be resident  of that urban area  (Town) only. States/UTs at their discretion, may decide a cutoff date on which beneficiaries need to be resident of that urban area.

The government has put a condition of residence to make available homes to really needy persons near their workplace only. However by providing these home to non-eligible persons builders and primary lending institutes (PLI)  are blatantly flouting these conditions. This is the reason that earlier affordable housing schemes failed and couldn't provide the home to whom they were meant for.   

To avoid duplication or misuse of the scheme PLIs have to take NOCs quarterly from State/UT Governments or designated agency of State/UT Governments for the list of beneficiaries being given benefits under credit linked subsidy. State Level Nodal Agency (SLNA) identified by State/Union Territory (UT) for implementing the mission has to facilitate the identified eligible beneficiaries in getting approvals and documents etc., to avail credit linked subsidy. Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO) and National Housing Bank (NHB) have been identified as Central Nodal Agencies (CNAs) to channelize this subsidy to the lending institutions and for monitoring the progress of this scheme . However none of the CNA or SLNA are doing their job and hence builders hand in gloves with PLI's cheating innocent people.

 In Maharashtra's case Maharashtra housing and development corporation ( MHADA) is SLNA. However, MHADA hasn't prepared any list of beneficiaries . Hence, PLI's and builders are also flouting the conditions blatantly . Not only that , they  shamelessly advertise fake beneficiaries as genuine and bring other in their net

The PLI and builders are also flouting the norm that the beneficiary family should not own a pucca house (an all whether dwelling unit) either in his/her name or in the name of any member of his/her family in any part of India . This condition is there to ensure that the real homeless people should get home. However, the builders are encouraging investors  and second home buyers to take advantage of CLSS.

Actually, Beneficiary of CLSS has to apply for a housing loan directly or through the Urban Local Body (ULB)  or the local agencies identified by the State/ULBs for facilitating the applications from intended beneficiaries. And PLI 's are  supposed to  link beneficiary identification to Aadhaar, Voter Card, any other unique identification or a certificate of house ownership from Revenue Authority of Beneficiary’s native district to avoid duplication. Builders and PLI's are flouting these conditions also.

In the nutshell, builders and PLI's have started encouraging non-eligible persons to invest and buy the flats under CLSS depriving really homeless persons from having his/her dream home. If proper care is not taken in time the PMAY will met also same fate as earlier schemes. homeless people will remain homeless and builders and PLI's will steal all the benefits meant for homeless.


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No law in force to regulate and control real estate business in Maharashtra

Since central government has notified some provisions of Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 (REA) and repealed Maharashtra Real Estate (regulation and development) Act 2012  (MREA). Some people unnecessary creating confusion that though MREA as been repealed Maharashtra Ownership of Flats act (MOFA ) is still in force. But that is not true. And as MOFA stands repealed by Government of Maharashtra , centre has repealed MREA 2012 and as all the provisions REA 2016 have not been notified , time being there is no law to regulate and control real estate business is in force.


Photo courtsey hindustantimes.com


Even if for arguments sake we accept that Maharashtra government had not repealed MOFA. As per article 254 of the constitution of India, the parliament has all the powers to enact any time any law with respect to the same matter including a law adding to, amending, varying or repealing the law so made by the Legislature of the State.Hence centre repealed MREA 2012. In case MOFA had been in force centre would have repealed it also.


Photo courtsey www.realtorindian.com


Centre didnt repeal MOFA because it was repealed with introduction MREA 2012 it self . In fact MREA 2012 was basically brought in to force because MOFA had failed  to give any relief to flat purchasers against sundry abuses, malpractices and difficulties related to the construction, sale, management and transfer of flats.

Central Government notification

Another argument to believe that MOFA was repealed was the Section 1 (3) of MREA 2012 and REA 2016 are the same. It says that the act shall come into force on such date as the Central Government may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint Provided that different dates may be appointed for different provisions of this Act and any reference in any such provision to the commencement of this Act shall be construed as a reference to the coming into force of that provision. Maharashtra government had notified this section while central government has not notified it. That means with this notification itself all the provisions of MREA 2012 including repeal of MOFA had come into force. 

State Government notification


Now it seems that since at present there is no act to regulate and control real estate business in force,the  Government of Maharashtra is planing to designate somebody as RERA. However as The sections of REA2016 that the Centre has notified are related to establishment , incorporation , Composition of  The Real Estate Regulatory  Authority (RERA) , Term of office ,  Salary and allowances payable to Chairperson and Members only .And as it has not notified section related  Obligations, Functions and duties of promoters , Rights and duties of flat purchasers, Penalties for contravention of any section. Even if Government of Maharashtra  designate somebody as RERA it will not be of any use in absence of any regulatory or penalty powers .

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