SC ban on construction will impact labourers, housing sector: Realtors

“We need to look at the fine print in the recent Supreme Court order banning new construction in three states, including Maharashtra since the realty industry body was not party to this case. Greater clarity in this matter is required since the apex court in March, 2018 had lifted the ban on new constructions in Mumbai and Mumbai Metropolitan Region, following the intervention by Maharashtra Chamber of Housing Industry (MCHI). We wish to consult legal experts to ascertain whether building construction in Mumbai is also part of the new SC order or it affects the infrastructure projects alone. Mayur Shah, MD, Marathon Group.

New Delhi : Realtors’ apex bodies CREDAI and NAREDCO on Saturday said the Supreme Court should not have stayed construction activities in some states and union territories (UTs) where waste management policy has not been framed. Although CREDAI and NAREDCO shared concerns expressed by the apex court, they said the blanket ban on construction would affect housing supply and daily wage labourers.

The Supreme Court on Friday had castigated some states and UTs for “pathetic” attitude in not framing proper policy on solid waste management and stayed further constructions there till they brought it out. “We understand the Supreme Court’s predicament and concerns. However, we at CREDAI feel that the court should not stay the construction activities as this will have a direct implication on the jobs of the daily wage earners in the industry,” CREDAI Chairman Getamber Anand said. India’s GDP could also suffer, he added. Stating that waste management is still a work in progress, Anand said the decision to stay the construction activities might not be a definitive solution to resolve the matter.

Commenting on the issue, NAREDCO President Niranjan Hiranandani said the apex court’s “intention is good from a long term perspective, but a blanket ban stopping all construction will have a negative impact on housing.” He said housing

supply would be affected, so as home buyers. “Effectively, home buyers will suffer just because some state governments have not formally notified the policy. Perhaps, it would have been better if the Hon’ble Court would have penalised the state administration and barred new construction while allowing on-going projects to be completed,” Hiranandani said.

The NAREDCO President hoped that matter would be resolved soon. ANAROCK Chairman Anuj Puri said the Supreme Court’s action seems justified in the backdrop of  rising pollution levels and frequent flooding in our cities.

“This move of the court will prove to be a major setback for the realty sector, which had only recently started to show some sign of revival. The impeding stay on construction will further push the delivery dates of ongoing projects,” he said. Projects worth Rs 464,300 crore for a total of 575,900 units are already significantly behind schedule, and this stern stand of Supreme Court may add to this number, Puri said.

While slapping varied fines on some state governments and union territory (UT) administrations, a bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Abdul Nazeer had on Friday said “if they want the people to live in dirt, filth and garbage, what can be done then.”  The court said it was “unfortunante” that states and UTs, including Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Chandigarh, had not yet framed any policy under the 2016 Solid Waste Management Rules, even after the passage of two years. “The attitude of the states/union territories in not yet framing a policy even after two years is pathetic, to say the least,” the court said, adding, “Further constructions in the states/union territories are stayed until the policy is framed.”

— By Agencies


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