Homebuyer’s apex body Forum for People’s Collective Efforts (FPCE) has expressed concern over the fact that, the members of RERA Authority and the Appellate Tribunal have not yet been appointed in West Bengal and the portal is not yet functional even after eight months of the apex court striking down West Bengal Housing Industry Regulation Act (WBHIRA) 2017 as ‘unconstitutional’.
The central government of India has decided to assess the reasons for non-compliance of orders issued by various chapters of the RERA. A committee including homebuyers and realty developers will be formed to examine different orders that have been passed by the state-specific authorities, but have not been complied with yet.
In March 2022, Calcutta High Court observed that only the apex court under Article 142 of the Constitution can clarify whether the orders passed under the repealed legislation, the West Bengal Housing Industry Regulation Act, 2017 (WBHIRA), are saved and the execution thereof can be continued.
In the meeting of the Central Advisory Council (CAC) in April 2022 it was decided that the central government may also ask the state government of West Bengal to provide their inputs in this matter with an objective of making RERA more effective and offering an impactful recourse mechanism to the homebuyers. The government has also decided to form a committee including government representatives, homebuyers and developers to take up the issue of implementation of RERA in West Bengal.
“Despite the orders getting served, homebuyers are left in the lurch as the enforcement of these orders is taking unreasonable time. The Housing Minister himself suggested this move to form a committee to study the procedure followed by states that rank high in enforcement of RERA orders,” said Abhay Upadhyay, the FPCE president. According to him, this will set an example for West Bengal to follow so that RERA orders see faster execution and homebuyers can expect justice within a minimum time. He further added, “It is very, very sad and unfortunate that homebuyers of West Bengal has been left to fend for themselves and all three pillars, that is judiciary, legislature and executives, have turned blind eye to their sufferings,” and builders are having a free run as they are launching and advertising new projects in West Bengal without RERA registration, which is mandatory.