The Consumer Protection Act, allows home buyers to approach the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) only if the project cost exceeds INR 10 million. In a historic decision by the Supreme Court, home buyers can now file a complaint together by forming an association to fulfil the condition of minimum project cost of INR 10 million. In addition, according to the prior mandate an association can only file a consumer complaint, if it is recognised under the Bureau of Indian Standards (Recognition of Consumers’ Associations) Rules, 1991. The above said stipulation is also cast aside by the NCDRC and the Supreme Court.
Colliers International Research view
The said judgment by the Supreme court is a welcome addendum for the home buyers until the RERA Appellate Authority is set in motion in all the states. Now, the buyers need not to go through the state commission and can directly approach NCDRC with their grievances, which is likely to expedite the resolution of such complaints. According to Section 23 of Consumer Protection Act, 1986, any person aggrieved by an order of NCDRC, can appeal against such order to the Supreme Court of India within a period of 30 days.