In first penalty under the new Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) norms that have given a big boost to home buyers, a Chembur-based real estate consultant firm has been asked to pay Rs 1.2 lakh as fine for a misleading advertisement of an ongoing construction project. Penalised under Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRERA) act, Sai Estate Consultant became the first firm to be fined under the act. The Authority’s order, issued on Monday, stated that the consultant was guilty of advertising a project which wasn’t registered with it at the time of advertising. Under the new rules, advertising for sale of flats in projects that are not registered with the Authority is considered as a violation under the rules of the regulatory body. The firm, which advertised a project of Haware builders in Thane, has also been asked to withdraw the advertisement and restrain from promoting it in absence of the Authority’s registration. In addition to the fine, the firm has also been asked to tender an apology. The action comes as result of a complaint, filed in this regard from consumer activist outfit, the Mumbai Grahak Panchayat. “We welcome this bold order, and hope builders and real estate agents learn lessons from it,” the activist outfit was quoted as saying by Indian Express.
RERA-Real Estate Regulatory Authority came into affect from May 1. The act, which lays rules and regulation for the real estate sector, is aimed to bring transparency, efficiency, and professionalism that will further strengthen home buyers’ confidence. Gautam Chaterjee, a former state government bureaucrat, has been appointed as the Chairman of the Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (Maha RERA). Under RERA, Maharasgtra government had established Maha RERA on March 8 for regulation and promotion of real estate sector in the state, with its headquarters in Mumbai.