MUMBAI: In a relief for developers in Mumbai, the SC on Monday issued a notice to the Maharashtra government and restrained the state from cancelling development schemes due to violations by developers to the repealed urban land ceiling law.
The SC was hearing an appeal by MCHI against a recent judgment of the Bombay High Court, which held that developers and landowners could not escape liability despite the repeal of Urban Land (Ceiling & Regulation) Act in 2007. The HC order came to the aid of the state and empowered it to recover excess land for public housing from private landowners for violations under the defunct Act.
The HC had, by a majority view, essentially allowed the state to "cancel the schemes" if developers were found to have violated mandatory conditions while the 1976 Act was in existence.
Under Section 20 of Ulcra, developers could get their lands exempted if they handed over 5% of flats to the government for public housing. An individual could hold land not more than 500 sq mt in size and the remaining had to be surrendered to the government for public housing.
The claim of real estate developers is that the state cannot take the excess land because the law no longer exists.