In a major relief for developers, the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA) on Thursday extended the completion deadline for all registered projects by three months.
Further, the authority also extended the time limits of all statutory compliances in accordance with the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 and the rules and regulations which were due in March, April or AMay are till June 30, 2020.
"For all MahaRERA registered projects where completion date, revised completion date or extended completion date expires on or after 15th March 2020, the period of validity for registration of such projects shall be extended by three months. MahaRERA shall accordingly issue project registration certificates, with revised timelines for such projects, at the earliest," said the order.
It said that in view of the partial lockdown in the state earlier and the eventual nation-wide lockdown, the construction work in MahaRERA-registered projects has been severely affected and the supply chains for obtaining construction material have been disrupted and labour work force may have migrated back to their home states.
"Due to these circumstances, real estate projects across Maharashtra will take some time to restart work. Recognising this, RBI has also allowed banks to provide a three month moratorium on fixed term loans and EMI payments. Therefore, in order to aid government efforts in controlling the damage of COVID-19 and ensure that completion of MahaRERA registered projects does not get adversely affected, it has been decided to issue this order," it said.
Developers welcomed the relief from the authority. Ashok Mohanani, Chairman EKTA World said that at a time when there is "mental, social and economic unrest globally, this move brings relief".
He noted that the lockdown brought all work to standstill, hence a deadline extension for under construction projects was definitely the need of the hour.
Farshid Cooper, MD, Spenta Corporation was of the view that with the country under a 21-day lockdown, there will be several real estate projects which will get delayed because of the pandemic.
"We are happy that MahaRERA has extended the timeline for completion of projects by three months, which has given developers time to deal with the situation," Cooper said.
President of the National Real Estate Development Council (NAREDCO) Niranjan Hiranandani described the decision as a "proactive" step by Maharashtra RERA.
"Even after the lockdown is lifted, it is anyone's guess how long it will take for things to return to normalcy," Hiranandani said.
Welcoming the MahaRERA's decision, Nahar Group's Vice Chairperson, Manju Yagnik said that this extension of the deadline for projects in Maharashtra is in sync with RBI's announcement of granting a 3-month moratorium for payment of home loan EMIs and other working capital loans.
"We welcome this move in the wake of supply chain disruption, migration of workers and other related issues, as it will take some time for the real estate industry to be on track. A much-appreciated step when the country is under total lock-down to counter the impact of pandemic COVID-19 leading to construction work coming at grinding halt," she said.
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