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August 7, 2021

Invoking Force Majeure for Covid-19 Pandemic second wave: MahaRERA

by CA Shivam Jaiswal in Corporate Law

Invoking Force Majeure for Covid-19 Pandemic second wave: MahaRERA

The Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 has been in force since 1st May 2017. This law was implemented to guide and supervise the real estate sector. The Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA) is the body that governs the real estate sector in Maharashtra.

Maharashtra has appointed a regulatory authority which will deal with disclosures by developers, registration of projects as well as agents and take consumer complaints. Any aggrieved individual can file a complaint with MahaRERA or the adjudicating officer with respect to any registered or non-registered real estate projects for any violations of regulations.

Covid-19 second wave MahaRERA grants 6-month extension to developers till October read below order

MAHARASHTRA REAL ESTATE REGULATORY AUTHORITY

Date :06/08/2021

Order No: – 21/2021

No. MahaRERA / Secy / File No. 27 / 157 /2021

Subject: Invoking Force Majeure for Covid-19 Pandemic second wave for a period of extension of project registration by 6 months w.e.f.15.04.2021.

Whereas, in view of COVID-19 (Corona Virus) Pandemic and consequent nation-wide lockdown with effect from March, 2020, reverse migration of labourers to their native places and break in supply chain of construction material, the construction activities of real estate projects across the country had been severely impacted.

Whereas Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs had issued Advisory regarding extension of registration of real estate projects and concurrently extending timelines of all statutory compliances due to ‘Force Majeure’ under the provisions of Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 (RERA), on 13th May 2020 and subsequently MahaRERA had revised project registration validity by 6 months.

Whereas, MahaRERA accordingly had issued an order under no.14/2020 dated 18.05.2020 granting an extension of a period of six months, from 15.03.2020 to 14.09.2020, in compliance of the directives of GOI.

Whereas, second wave of Covid-19 pandemic started in April 2021 and construction work places came to stand still due to non-availability of labours and construction on movement of building material etc. and this wave especially was more predominant in Maharashtra.

Whereas, Government of Maharashtra took decision and issued orders vide no.DMU/2020/CR.92/DisM-1, dated 13/04/2021, imposing various restriction on construction activity amongst other including penalty for default,

Whereas, many promoter organization have represented to MahaRERA to extend timeline by at least another six months due to second wave crippling the entire construction industry.

Whereas Second wave was much more devastating than first wave and has caused great loss to human lives as well as economy. And consequent lockdowns have caused disruption of supply chains for obtaining construction material, Labour work force migration and slowdown in pace of construction.

Therefore, in order to aid government efforts in controlling the damage coused due to COVID-19 and ensure that completion of MahaRERA registered projects does not get adversely affected, it has been decided to issue this order.

In exercise of the powers under section 37 read with Section 34(a), 34(f) and 34(g), a force majeure period of six months, from 15th April to 14th October, 2021 is being declared and the following directions are issued with immediate effect:

For all MahaRERA Registered projects where completion date, revised completion date or extended completion date expires on or after 15th April 2021, the period of validity for registration of such projects shall be extended by six months. MahaRERA shall accordingly issue project registration certificates, with revised timelines for such projects, at the earliest. The above automatic extension shall not apply to projects that was to be completed before 15th April, 2021.

The time limits for compliances under Section 11, which become due anytime during force majeure period, shall stand automatically extended for a period till the expiry of force majeure period.

The above extensions shall not affect the rights of the allottees as may be available to the allottees under the provisions of the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016, the Rules and Regulation made thereunder.

As approved by Authority

(Dr. Vasant Prabhu)
Secretary, MahaRERA

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