On Thursday, state cooperation minister Atul Save told TOI that his department has not given their approval for rescinding the Maharashtra Ownership of Flats Act (MOFA), 1963, and had conveyed the case to the state housing department for further discussion.

The minister said that according to the department the Act was in the favor of the homebuyers and can co-exist with the RERA Act in the state. “We have proposed our suggestions to the housing department regarding the issue, which will be discussed soon,” he said.

Officials said that deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis, who holds various portfolios including housing, is expected to schedule a meeting on the case soon.

Housing societies and federations had opposed the rescinding of MOFA and sent out letters to the MLAs to air their views ahead of the upcoming winter session of the assembly, to be held in Nagpur.

A housing federation member said against rescinding the MOFA that the violation of any of the provisions of MOFA is considered a criminal offense under Section 13 of the Act, allowing FIRs against errant builders. Similar provisions are not available in RERA Act”.

It seemed that the cooperation department was acquainted with the pain of the housing societies with the unfaithful promoters failing to obey statutory obligations, such as the formation of society, granting of conveyance of land and building and providing accounts, among others, under the MOFA, said Chairman of the Maharashtra Society Welfare Association Ramesh Prabhu.

Chairman said that repealing the MOFA will bring difficulties for the cooperative housing societies that are going for redevelopment.

Experts said that to replace MOFA, other laws will be required to strengthen to match its strict provisions.

Prabhu said that they had reached out to the elected representatives and are happy that the cooperation department has decided to be in favor of the homebuyers’ side. It is a great achievement of the cooperative housing societies that have supported this campaign of not repealing MOFA. He said that the members also met with MLA Ashish Shelar who had given assurance to discuss the issue in the upcoming assembly session.

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