In Kerala, RERA is a non-starter

In Kerala, RERA is a non-starter

Representative Image (Photo by AFP)

The recent Supreme Court order to demolish five apartments in Kochi for CRZ violation has put the focus back on the need for fast-tracking Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) in Kerala. 

The RERA is still in nascent stages of formation in Kerala even as enquiries and complaints galore about real estate projects.

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After a long wait and much controversy, former additional chief secretary P H Kurian was appointed as the authority chairman in early October and advocate Preetha Menon as a member. For the authority to commence its functioning, it requires one more member, support staff and most importantly, an appellate authority headed by a justice.

Advocate Preetha told DH that the government was expediting the steps for the appointments. “We hope the authority could commence functioning within the next six months,” she said.

The Kerala Government initially set up RERA in 2016 based on state legislation and even appointed a former chief town planner as its chairman. When the Centre later introduced the RERA Act, the state’s RERA couldn’t function as new rules had to be framed. The process was progressing at a snail’s pace until recently.

Even as RERA has remained a non-starter, the RERA office set up in Thiruvananthapuram receives numerous complaints and enquiries about ongoing and upcoming housing projects. A major chunk of the complaints pertains to delayed completion. But RERA office has not been able to take any steps as the full authority was not yet formed, said an official who was associated with it.

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