No RERA site address in project advertisements? Fork out fine

Feb 15, 2018, 18:44 IST | Chetna Yerunkar

Six developers who published ads of their upcoming projects in newspapers have been fined by the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority

No RERA site address in project advertisements? Fork out fineFile pic for representation

Six developers who published ads of their upcoming projects in newspapers have been fined by the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA). Reason: they hadn't given the authority's website address —https://maharera.mahaonline.gov.in— in their ads.

Nine months after its inception, the authority seems to have woken up to start taking action against developers failing to comply with provisions of the RERA Act, 2016.

The act mandates that developers must publish the website address, as on it homebuyers can see legal details of the project they are interested in. 

Cracking down
RERA's ruling to the six developers read, "With a view to having uniformity, MahaRERA had, through scrolls on its website and also by sending emails, informed all promoters of registered projects the manner in which MahaRERA registration number and website address should be displayed in advertisements or brochures made by registered promoters." And yet, the ads put out by these developers violated the instructions, said a RERA official.

Explaining further, officials said one of the developers had been fined R12 lakh because not only did he fail to mention the website details, but he also advertised a project that's not yet registered with the authority.

The suo moto order against Kabra and Associates stated, "The mentioned advertisement has prima facie violated section 3(1) by advertising a non-registered project and section 11(2) by not mentioning the website address of MahaRERA. In addition, the advertisement has carried a 'disclaimer', which also prima facie violates section 14(2) of the Act."

'Unintentional gaffe'
The ruling added that during the hearing held by RERA, the developers apologised and said their intention wasn't to not comply with the Act, and hence, they shouldn't be fined. MahaRERA accepted their contention that the violation happened unintentionally, charging them only a token penalty under the provisions of section 59(1).

RERA official Dr Vijay Sathbir Singh said, "We have started penalising those who are not following the act, instead of waiting for complaints. Recently, we fined five builders for publishing ads in newspapers that did not give complete details."

An office staff of Kabra and Associates asked mid-day to call after two days, saying the directors were not available, refusing to share any details. The other five developers who were penalised are Puranik Builders Pvt Ltd, Ms Ashar Realtors, Rikki Ronie Developers, Lashkaria Housing & Infrastructure Pvt Ltd, and Good Time Real Estate Development Pvt Ltd.

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