The flagging realty market in Gurgaon and Faridabad received a major boost on April 20 when the Punjab and Haryana high court vacated a stay on issuing change of land use (CLU) licences to builders and on acquiring land to develop residential and commercial properties in that part of NCR.
A division bench headed by Justice S K Mittal lifted the stay, accepting Haryana government's submission that it has prepared a sub-regional plan of the area that meets the National Capital Region Planning Board (NCRPB) norms.
In January 2014, the HC had restrained the state from issuing CLU licences to any developer and also stopped land acquisition after hearing a petition alleging unregulated construction in NCR. On Monday, the government argued that the state was not required to take approval of NCRPB because it had prepared a sub-regional plan for the NCR area, in conformity with the observations of the board.
"Once full compliance of NPB provisions for the development of the area has been met in the sub-regional plan, the development of the state cannot be at a standstill," the state counsel argued while seeking relief from the court.
After hearing the arguments, the bench ordered that the ban on issuance of CLU licences and on the acquisition of land for developing colonies in Gurgaon and adjoining areas of NCR be lifted.
The matter had reached the HC when Rishi Dagar and others from Gurgaon filed a petition alleging unregulated construction and development in the district and NCR without the mandatory sub-regional plan from the NCRPB being in place.
The state government is required to prepare a sub-regional plan for its areas that fall in NCR. The petitioners had also challenged the proposed Gurgaon Master Plan 2025 and 2031.
In an affidavit filed on May 30, 2014, the Haryana government had claimed that it had prepared the sub-regional plan and got it approved from the NCRPB. However, contesting the Haryana government's claims, the NCRPB had submitted in August 2014 that there were several deficiencies in Haryana's sub-regional plan.
"It is a welcome step which will help unlock the valuable investment in the market. Government should do needful in advance so that things don't get delayed," said Naveen Raheja, chairman and managing director, Raheja Developers.
However, some builders believe that government should do more to bailout the realty sector from troubled waters. Anubhav Jain, director, Group Silverglades, said "This (the HC order) will pave the way for new licensed colonies and remove the hurdle for developers. However, this respite comes a little late as Delhi-NCR market faces many challenges."