Work at construction sites in Gurgaon stopped on Tuesday as the city’s real estate sector joined a nationwide strike to show solidarity with the developer in Mumbai who shot himself over alleged harassment by government officials.
A majority of developers in the city stopped work and called for the state and central governments to take measures to reduce the pressure on builders.
The one-day strike called by the Confederation of Real Estate Developers’ Association of India (CREDAI), a national level body of 11, 500 realtors, was observed across the country.
Geetamber Anand, president, CREDAI, said the strike was observed to send out the message that the realty sector is in trouble and immediate steps are needed to improve its situation.
“The real estate sector contributes to GDP, creates jobs, pays taxes and so needs to be treated with respect. We should not be harassed and there should be a check on bureaucratic and political interference,” he said. Other developers also said that being a capital-intensive industry does not mean that they can pay whatever they are asked for.
Asked about the steps the sector wants the government to take, Anand said that there is a need to make ‘ease of doing business’ a reality down to the lowest levels of the government.
“We are also worried about the impact on customers as they too are suffering due to the present situation,” he added.
A leading Gurgaon-based developer said that the cost of doing business has multiplied several times as developers have to obtain hundreds of permissions and no-objection certificates (NOCs).
“We want a single-window clearance system as soon as possible and reduction in corruption. Otherwise Mumbai-like suicides could happen in this city as well. Developers are caught between banks, customers, money lenders and investors. There is a pressure to deliver, but no help from the government,” he said.
Violence erupts after labourer ends life
Workers at an under-construction site in Sector 112 turned violent after one of their colleagues committed suicide at the site on Tuesday.
The 28-year-old labourer, Rajesh Kumar, was found hanging from the ceiling of the 19th floor of the building.
The suicide created panic and anger among the around 100 workers present at the site. They broke the glasses of the building and also destroyed a newly constructed office there.
To control the situation, a quick response team (QRT) of around 60 personnel was rushed to the spot along with the police. The situation was brought under control and no arrests were made.
Police is investigating the reason behind the suicide and the agitation by the workers.
“We reached the spot with a QRT of around 60 men. The situation was controlled, but no suicide note was recovered. No FIR has been registered, but a further investigation is in order,” said Sudeep Kumar, SHO, Palam Vihar police station.