Mumbai: Despite several instances of developers being discriminatory by denying flats to homebuyers for being non-vegetarian being reported, especially in Mumbai, the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA) has not received a single complaint in this regard, according to a MahaRERA official. “From the time of inception of RERA in May 2017 and the implementation of the RERA Act, till date, the authority has received nearly 4,850 complaints. But no complaint has been made on this score.”
The RERA Act has a provision to act against such complaints – Section 7(1)(c), which pertains to unfair trade practices. Under the new RERA Act, the developers cannot insist on selling flats to a particular community or members having specific dietary habits. This would curtail the right to life, a fundamental right, protected under the Indian Constitution and would also constitute discrimination on the basis of caste, creed, and religion.
Furthermore, under this provision, MahaRERA can act on a complaint by a flat purchaser, or take suo motu action against the developer for unfair trade practices and cancel their registration. Activist and advocate Godfrey Pimenta said, “RERA is very progressive legislation but the concerned implementing authorities are required to use it judiciously for the benefit of common man. Only then will a strong message go out to society. Several homebuyers, who invest their hard-earned money, are misguided by developers. Taking action against such developers will reinforce homebuyers’ trust in the regulatory body.”