No NOC from MBRRB since 1 yr to redevelop cess bldg

Mumbai: The MBRRB (Mumbai Building Repairs & Redevelopment Board) has not issued a single NOC (No objection Certificate) to redevelop cess buildings from September 2019 till date. Reason: The state government's amended government resolution (GR) has stringent conditions for the developers, said Vinod Ghosalkar, chairman of the MBRRB.

The amended GR passed by the former Housing Minister Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil has a high set of criteria. Like the developer interested to undertake redevelopment of cess buildings is required to have a total turnover of Rs 10 crore to Rs 50 crore in three years. Besides, the developer should have constructed 500 houses earlier, then only will be eligible for undertaking the redevelopment.

Ghosalkar explained, "Due to amended GR the redevelopment of cess buildings has completely stalled. No builder or landlord is approaching the board, as several do not fit in the amended GR criteria. The matter has been brought to the notice of CM Uddhav Thackeray also and soon in the cabinet meeting the GR is expected to be revised once again. "

There are 16,000 cess buildings and the MBRRB is responsible to collect cess and development of these buildings, which are mostly located in South Mumbai. MBRRB is an undertaking of MHADA (Maharashtra Housing and Area Development Authority)

Ghosalkar stated, "For big housing projects the amended conditions are suitable. While the old cess buildings are built on small land parcels and do not offer high floor space index (FSI) and therefore redevelopment is commonly carried out by small time builders or landlords themselves."

The amended GR was introduced in a bid to expedite the redevelopment of cess buildings after Kesarbai Mansion cess building at Dongri collapsed in July 2019.

A senior official from MBRRB, who did not wish to be named said, "It is true that the board has received a lukewarm response from builders to redevelop cess buildings in this one year. Apart from the amended GR, now due to the outbreak of novel coronavirus including the real estate sector is suffering from financial problems. Many a times, the landlords of cess buildings carry out redevelopment by appointing a contractor. In such cases, the GR acts as hindrance in the redevelopment process."

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