Mumbai: SRA CEO reports fake circular on selling flats

Updated: 11 September, 2020 07:35 IST | Shirish Vaktania | Mumbai

Cops register FIR after SRA official receives circular with forged signature which mentions that flat owners can now sell their properties after five years instead of 10 years

According to the SRA scheme, owners can sell flats only after the 10-year lock-in period.
According to the SRA scheme, owners can sell flats only after the 10-year lock-in period.

Last week after an official of the Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) received a fake circular mentioning that SRA flats could now be sold after a period of five years instead of 10 years, CEO Satish Lokhande filed a complaint at the Nirmal Nagar police station in the matter. The cops have registered an FIR against an unknown accused, who has even forged the CEO's signature on the notice and circulated it on social media. Police suspect that some estate agents might be involved in the matter, as this would make it easier for them to sell the flats.

The fake circular states, "Revision of project beneficiaries to sell their homes in five years instead of 10 years. Decision taken in a review meeting held on July 24, 2020 under the chairmanship of honourable chief minister. Considering all the suggestions from the developer and their associations and the present market scenario, the decision was taken on the basis of a recommendation provided by the sub-committee of the cabinet."

Speaking to mid-day, Lokhande said, "Last week one of our officials received a message on WhatsApp regarding the circular. The circular mentions that people can sell their SRA flats after five years. However, the rule is still the same and nobody can transfer their flats during the 10-year lock-in period. This fake circular even has my name and forged signature. I was shocked and immediately informed the Nirmal Nagar police about it. We have asked them to remove the circular from all social media sites. I'm sure a lot of people might have started selling off their flats. We have requested the police to take strict action against the accused."

The rule

SRA CEO Satish Lokhande
SRA CEO Satish Lokhande

"According to the SRA scheme, slum-dwellers get houses free of cost but they cannot sell or rent them out for 10 years. And if flats are sold off after the lock-in period then the state government charges stamp duty or `1 lakh, whichever amount is higher," Lokhande explained.

Copspeak

Senior inspector Shashikant Bhandare of Nirmal Nagar police station said, "We have registered an FIR against the unknown accused. We are taking help from the cyber team. The SRA CEO approached us last week after they received a fake circular. We will arrest the accused soon." Police have registered the case under sections 193 (punishment for false evidence), 465 (punishment for forgery) and 468 (forgery for purpose of cheating) of IPC.

Also Read: Mumbai Crime: 55-year-old SRA builder stabbed to death in Juhu

Slum Rehabilitation Authority guidelines

  • Pre-2011 slums are eligible for redevelopment or rehabilitation
  • After a slum is converted into a building, slum-dwellers can form cooperative societies.
  • Developers can also approach slum-dwellers for redevelopment
  • Redevelopment is possible only when 50 per cent of the slum-dwellers give their consent to the rehabilitation process.
  • SRA gives flats to those who live in slums as per their list under the scheme.
  • The developer should give temporary accommodation to slum-dwellers until a slum is redeveloped.
  • The developer should construct new buildings within deadlines and all eligible slum-dwellers must get flats for free.
  • Owners of SRA flats cannot sell the property during the 10-year lock-in period.
  • If the owners want to sell the properties after 10 years then they have to pay stamp duty or `1 lakh to the government, whichever amount is higher.

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First Published: 11 September, 2020 07:20 IST

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