Redevelopment of housing societies is usually burdened with bitterness and complaints of high-handedness and corruption against the Managing Committee. Hence, with a view to ensure transparency in societies seeking to undertake redevelopment projects, the state co-operative department has, for the first time, issued guidelines for societies to follow under section 79 (A) of the Maharashtra Co-operatives act, 1960.
The guidelines are issued by a committee comprising the co-operatives commissioner and Cidco chairman pursuant to a deep study of complaints by members of Housing Societies undertaking the redevelopment of their property. According to an important feature in the guidelines, a redevelopment scheme has to be approved by the general body only if three-fourths of the society members are present at the meeting.
The special general body has to approve the bid of the successful bidder in a meeting attended by the registrar. The entire proceedings have to be video-recorded. Once the agreement is accepted in terms of area and corpus fund, it cannot be revised. The successful bidder has to give a bank guarantee equivalent to 20% of the total project cost to show his financial strength, and proof that he will not throw away the project midway.
The Developer has to complete the redevelopment project in two years, or a maximum of three years. The development agreement must be signed on carpet-area basis. Most importantly, if, for some reason, the successful Developer is unable to complete the project, he cannot sell his agreement to another Developer.
It has been often noticed that during the process of redevelopment, the terms of Development Agreements as agreed upon, are later twisted and grossly violated by the Developers and the ground rules of MRTP and DCR by unlawful planning are flouted by constructing additional/unauthorized areas that are beyond the entitlement (i.e. beyond the plot FSI and the TDR/FSI loaded) for their hidden financial gains. The buyers of such unlawful flats/properties land themselves in deals that lead to litigation at a later date.
At times, upon the completion of the Project, there are major inconsistencies and discriminatory features noticed in the approved plans v/s actual layouts, measurements and other aspects in respect of the constructions of residential area and the commercial area which may not be in conformity with the Development Agreement originally executed between the Society and the Developer.
Under Right to Information Act, the Housing Society can procure all the Plans and the related documentary evidences from MCGM duly attested by two Senior Engineers of the Building Proposals Dept. to study the anomalies which exist in execution of the entire redevelopment project even after the occupancy certificate is issued.
It has also been observed that the deviation of vital Rules and Guidelines of MRTP/MCGM/DCR are conveniently overlooked by few corrupt and dishonest but “Sympathetic Officials” of MCGM and the final plans with numerous anomalies so submitted by the said Developer are approved by them without verifying the justifiability or its conformity with the Development Agreement executed with the Society.
Further, it is learnt that in many Societies, the Managing Committees, who execute the documents with the Developers, do not possess any legal holding as they have never filed/nor aware of filing the Indemnity Bond in Form M-20 on a Stamp required under Section 73(1AB) and Rule 58A of the Maharashtra Cooperative Societies Act 1960.
The members who fail to execute such Bonds within the specific period are deemed to have vacated his office as a member of the committee and no legal effects can be given to the documents executed by them with the Developers.