The BJP Rajya Sabha member from Karnataka Rajeev Chandrasekhar on Monday demanded that the Centre waive interest on home loans during the COVID-19 'force majeure' period.
He wrote to Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri, referring to the April 29 meeting of the Central Advisory Council, formed as per the Real Estate Regulation and Development Act (RERA) guidelines. Puri is also the chairman of the CAC. The BJP MP pointed out that a decision was taken at the meeting to provide six months extension for all active RERA registered projects due to the COVID-19 lockdown and to allow further extension on special cases after looking into the merits of each case.
Just as relief is being given to the builders, the interest of home buyers who are undergoing unimaginable economic hardships in these unprecedented times of COVID-19 lockdown needs protection, the MP said. "The interest part on the principal amount of the Loan during this COVID-19 force majeure period should be waived for the homebuyers. For no fault of the buyers, they need not pay both rent and Equated Monthly Installment (EMI)," the MP said.
'Force Majeure' clause is a contractual provision that addresses circumstances in which contractual performance becomes impossible or impractical due to events that could not be foreseen, and are not within party's control. He insisted that the extension of completion time for RERA registered projects be for the actual lockdown period only and that projects should not be delayed for the home buyers.