move into politics. The company and Vadra both deny wrongdoing.
Central bank rules prohibit bank loans to fund purchases of land, a regulation designed to curb speculation and reduce balance sheet risk for banks. To fill that void, wealthy individuals, including politicians, are widely believed to invest black money in real estate.
Some of that money can later be poured into election campaign donations from developers, say private equity investors, real estate consultants and sector analysts.
Those same developers might be awarded with plots of land at attractive prices or assisted in getting project approvals.
Black money comes in handy for bribing corrupt officials.
There is a cost of pushing the file. But what is the alternative? said Lalit Kumar Jain, chairman of the Confederation of Real Estate Developers in India (CREDAI).
For a typical residential project in Mumbai, developers need about 55 approvals from more than a dozen departments. Delays in consents add 40 percent to a project's cost, said Jain.
At least 10 developers Reuters tried to reach including DLF Ltd, Oberoi Realty, DB Realty Sobha Developers, and Hiranandani did not respond to emails, declined to comment or did not make officials available.
CREDAI backs the pending legislation that would create a single-window clearance for approvals, which it says will reduce the temptation to pay bribes. Getting consents in time would make homes cheaper by 25 percent, Jain said.
Our biggest problem is the approval process, said Jain, who is also the managing director of Mumbai-based property company Kumar Urban Development.
That is the only corruption we know of and where we are victimised and exploited. Otherwise developers are clean.