Corporators across party lines have demanded that the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) blacklist builders, who do not price their flats on the basis of carpet area (wall-to-wall area of the flat).
The issue will be discussed in the BMC’s general body meeting on October 26.
“Selling by super built-up only increases prices and makes houses unaffordable,” Vinod Shekhar, Congress corporator said. “The BMC should blacklist these builders and stop them from undertaking new projects.”
The BMC is the sanctioning authority for building plans. It also checks for violations.
The Hindustan Times had on Friday had reported that builders participating in the Maharashtra Chambers of Housing Industry (MCHI) exhibition at Bandra-Kurla Complex were selling apartments on the basis of super built-up area, despite directives from the government and the state housing body.
The super built-up area of a flat includes common areas such as staircases, elevators and even playgrounds, in the area of the flat. Builders at the exhibition also did not abide by the MCHI’s directive to disclose the carpet area of the flats on sale. More than 150 builders participated in the event. Buyers often do not know the actual area of the flat because the excess area charged for is not uniform and ranges from 30 to 50%. That means when the builder charges for a 1,000-sq-ft flat, the buyer ends up getting only 500 to 700 sq ft in area.
Bhalchandra Shirsat, Bharatiya Janata Party corporator, said the BMC should ask builders to disclose the sales they have made. “The BMC should stop all permissions to these projects if such an offence is taking place,” Shirsat said.
Babasaheb Bansod, Republican Party of India corporator, said builders violating the rules should be booked for cheating and be fined heavily.
The builders denied they were violating the rules. “There is no law that states we cannot mention the super built up area and until we disclose carpet area. We are obeying the law,” said Lalit Kumar Jain, chairman and managing director, Kumar Builders. He said builders have been disclosing the carpet area in brochures and agreements.