MUMBAI: Former Union minister and senior Congress politician Ajay Maken said that the proposed real estate regulatory authority bill was pro-builder and would leave homebuyers in the lurch.
"When the bill was introduced in the Lok Sabha, it was aimed at protecting the interest of homebuyers, but the PM Narendra Modi-led NDA government made a record number of amendments to the bill for the protection of the builders," Maken said. "We have opposed the proposed law and now it has been referred to the joint select committee."
Maken said in the original bill moved during the UPA tenure, carpet area was defined in an unambiguous manner as net usable area in a flat, excluding the walls. He said that in the amendment moved by the NDA government, net usable area would be rentable area as defined in the national building code or its later versions.
"The carpet area has been defined in such a manner that it will confuse the buyer and as it has been linked to the building code, it can be amended even without coming to Parliament," he said.
Maken said that earlier it was difficult to extend deadlines for projects, now the entire clause had been amended for the benefit of the builder. "We had proposed 70% of the amount be secured from the buyers for a particular project. Now the Modi government has reduced it to 50%. The new bill aims to benefit the builders," he said.
On net neutrality, Maken said the Congress believed all data on internet be treated equally. "It is unfortunate that the Modi government, telecom ministry and Trai are creating hurdles for making India digitally powerful," he said.
Maken said the government should issue Trai policy directions to scrap the 118-page consultation paper and the committee set up by the telecom ministry.
He said that despite tall promises, prices of essential commodities had increased manifold.