Real estate developers across the country have urged Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to constitute a sub-group of the National Development Council to specifically address the problems faced by them. They have asked Dr. Singh to put in place a mechanism to clear various roadblocks hindering the growth of the crucial sector. They have also threatened to go on strike if the government failed to meet their demands.

In a letter to the Prime Minister, the Confederation of Real Estate Developers' Associations of India (CREDAI), the apex body of the organised real estate developers, has pointed towards issues that are hurting the growth of the sector, which include undue delays in approvals of projects leading to substantial escalation in costs, compulsory reservation of 20 per cent land/FAR for houses meant for economically weaker sections and smaller houses, tax provisions and artificial escalation of cement prices.

The CREDAI has also asked Dr. Singh not to go ahead with the Real Estate Regulatory Bill and do away with impractical SEZ and IT park regulations as it would hurt the sector. The organisation has also brought to the notice of the Prime Minister that arbitrary and non-consultative orders/delays of central government departments such as environment, defence, archaeology and aviation affecting the real estate industry.

Reforms

“We have urged Dr. Singh to carry out administrative reforms, including faster development and building plan approval process, land reforms, tax reforms and banking reforms that will be the key for the development of the sector. Reforms such as e-based standardised single-window approval process, rationalisation of taxes and grant of infrastructure status to real estate will go a long way in rationalising the housing sector of the country,” said CREDAI President Lalit Kumar Jain.

“If the government fails to address their problems, CREDAI members will go on strike…our governing council will meet in Mumbai on May 12 to decide further course of action, including going on strike,” he added.