In a major relief to Mumbai’s construction industry, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has further extended the validity of various development permissions granted by it for building constructions.
In a circular issued last week, Mumbai civic commissioner Iqbal Singh Chahal has ruled that the validity of all IODs (Intimation of Disapproval), commencement certificates and letters of approvals and development permissions, expiring, letters of approvals and development permissions, whose validities have expired on or after March 1, 2020, had been extended up to December 31, 2020.
An IOD is the initial development permission given to a project, which lists conditions for compliance before the commencement of actual construction. Validities of other development and building permissions including Transferable Development Rights Certificates, letters of intent, debris management plans, no dues certificates from various department, etc, have been extended similarly.
Following a representation from construction industry representatives, the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Planning Affairs had directed states to give a nine-month extension to validities of various kinds of approvals. Earlier in April, the BMC had extended the validities of all these approvals till June 30, invoking the force majeure clause in the wake of the pandemic to grant relief to city builders.
“In view of the Covid-19 outbreak and subsequent lockdown, various industry outfits had reported that applications for renewal (of development permissions) could not be submitted. Those submitted online could not be processed, since the office of the architects, license surveyors and the project proponents being closed. It is therefore necessary to consider the force majeure situation arisen,” states the circular issued in April.
In its latest circular, the civic body, meanwhile, has also withdrawn the need to make a formal application of revalidation for availing the concession. Based on the directions of the Union ministry, the urban body has now permitted auto extension to these approvals subject to recovery of revalidation charges. The civic body has ruled that no penalties will be levied while granting renewals or revalidations.
While city builders have welcomed the latest extension move, most are pitching for even more perks and an economical revival package for the construction industry. Already reeling under a slowdown, the construction industry has been among the worst-hit by the pandemic. Industry bodies have approached both the state and the Union governments for an industry-specific stimulus package.
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