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State moots law to rein in real estate cheats

State moots law to rein in real estate cheats

Thiruvananthapuram: The State government is planning to introduce a new bill to prevent fly-by-night operators from cheating people by promising villas and flats, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy said Wednesday.

Many real estate operators promise flats or villas, collect initial payments, and then disappear in a trice, leaving those who had paid them high and dry. Since many such complaints have been received in the state, a new law will be made to deal with this menace, the Chief Minister told reporters.

Chandy was speaking after the regular weekly cabinet meeting in the State capital.

"We first mooted this last year, and we were told that the centre is coming out with such a bill. Now we have decided to have our own law, because complaints in this regard are increasing by the day. We have also decided that once the centre's bill comes, we will integrate ours with that one," Chandy said.

The Centre's proposed bill has been discussed in the upper house. The Lok Sabha is yet to take up this matter.

"Many from Kerala's diaspora community have fallen prey to real estate scams. The Kerala State Housing Board has already prepared a draft bill in this matter, and now the law department is working on it," Chandy said.

Numerous such instances of cheating have been reported in the media in the recent past. Announcements of building flats and villas are made at road shows in the Middle East, and members of Kerala's diaspora are roped in.

After initial payments are collected, the real estate company disappears, leaving investors running from pillar to post.

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