BDA: “Let’s use the COVID-19 tragedy as an opportunity to transform Mumbai”: Dr. Jitendra Awhad

Brihanmumbai Developers Association (BDA) MegaUnity Webinar highlights pain points of real estate

“COVID-19 crisis is a time of hardship. We will all have to join hands,have a relationship of trust and faith. Let’s use this tragedy as an opportunity.We will have to think about slums, MHADA colonies and redevelopment. SRA and MHADA will have to facilitate the builders to not only survive but grow. Until the housing industry starts flourishing, Mumbai and the entire MMR cannot flourish. Certain concessions will have to be considered. If we can’t give permission in 30 days, provisional permission should be given. If I am not pro-builder, I am not pro-poor. If the rehab building is not created, how will they get a home?” Dr. JitendraAwhad, Cabinet Minister for Housing, Government of Maharashtra, declared while addressing a webinar on the theme ‘Accelerate Mumbai Redevelopment Post Covid-19,’ held on 27th May, 2020 as part of an ongoing series organized by the Brihanmumbai Developers Association (BDA).

Asking the BDA to share a formal list of concessions and other requirements for facilitating the redevelopment process, with an assurance that the government will responding 15 days, the minister emphasized that “The government will do all essential needy things as per your demands. Government will have to cut premiums, some policy of major help has to be given to builders. Self-certification has started, it will be promoted further. Premium concessions we had decided will be given immediately. We have lost 70 days due to lockdown. We will have to keep social distancing and wear mask and do work. With all limitations we will work.I will see to it SRA is online in 8 days!”

After unveiling the BDA motto – United We Build to mark the launch of the Central Mumbai chapter of BDA with associations from Chembur and Ghatkopar joining hands with BDA, the minister affirmed that “The government is with you and will remain with you. We will be like an elder brother supporting you.” The minister also shared that he would like to create a ‘super express highway’ to facilitate developers and enable them to expedite their work.

“We need to work for restoring the ailing Mumbai. The city’s health infrastructure has collapsed.Unless we develop slums where 10-15 people live in just one room along with the health infrastructure, we will not be doing justice to the people. Dharavi redevelopment is the need of the hour as in areas like Govandi, Kamathipura, etc. I would invite architects to join this initiative for the wellbeing of Mumbai where 35 per cent of land and 60 per cent of the population is in slums. Labourers have returned to their native place but once industry starts, those people will be back. Everybody will work hard. Mumbai is a city where perspiration pays. From that effort we will have victory.”

Harrish Jain, Vice President, Brihanmumbai Developers Association (BDA), thanked the minister and pledged that BDA would support the government in all endeavours. He confirmed that BDA would share its list of requested concessions and reforms. Dr. Jitendra Awhad said that a joint meeting of BDA representatives along with the heads of SRA and MHADA would be convened to take up those points.

BDA Demands

1. Interest free moratorium period of one year deferred payment of all premiums or OC (occupation certificate) whichever is earlier.
2. Equivalent amount of flat of premium payable can be kept as lien to Mhada and SRA till premiums are paid on receipt of OC
3. Reduction in all premiums / charges by flat 50% at least.
4. Online approval systems in Mhada and SRA
5. Fixed timelines for approval in Mhada and SRA and accountability for the same.
6. Immediate implementation of all Minutes of meeting which was approved by Minister sir in January & February.