The Rajasthan High Court issued notice to Rajasthan RERA in a PIL, Civil Writ No. 6160/2020, challenging the order issued by the Authority on 13.05.2020. The Authority granted an across-the-board extension of 12 months to the real estate projects. However, it also implicitly granted extension for projects whose completion date had already expired before 19.3.2020. This denied the compensation to be claimed by homebuyers for delay in possession of the flat/apartment/unit.
The order was made in pursuance of the Central Advisory Council’s meeting dated 29.04.2020 held under the chairmanship of Hon’ble Minister of State, Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India. The Council had recommended an automatic extension of 6 (Six) months to all real estate projects where the completion date or revised completion date or extended completion date expires on or after 25.03.2020.
However, the Authority exceeded its jurisdiction and under the guise of treating COVID-19 as force majure made the order to defer execution of refund orders by a year alongwith no action for incorrect advertisement. The Authority directed that no coercive steps will be taken in case of refund granted previously and to be passed in future also. Advocates Nipun Singhvi and Pranjul Chopra appearing for the petitioner submitted that the refund granted by judicial order cannot be interfered by an executive order of RERA authority. They further argued that a promoter making a false and incorrect statement cannot be let go due to COVID-19 and passing such an order is patently illegal as the RERA act does not empower the Authority to do so.
Petitioner Ashish Sharma is a practising advocate at Rajasthan High court and RERA/Tribunals. He is public spirted person and challenged RERA order which interferes in functioning of quasi-judicial foras.
The High court issued notice on petition returnable after three weeks and posted on 21.07.2020. Matter was heard by bench of Hon’ble Chief justice Shri Indrajit Mahanty & Hon’ble Justice Shri Satish Kumar Sharma.