The Supreme Court on February 14 lifted the ban on overnight construction activities in Delhi-NCR, providing a major relief to the construction sector.
The court had imposed a complete ban on construction activities in Delhi-NCR on November 4, 2019. This was after taking into account the drastic deterioration in air quality in and around the Delhi-NCR region.
Later on December 9, the order was modified after the central pollution control board informed the court that the ban can be partially lifted following which construction was halted between 6 PM to 6 AM.
"Recall the order of November 4," the bench said on February 14.
The construction ban had hit the real estate sector and even Delhi Metro's construction work.
"We welcome the decision to lift the ban completely. Since the last four months we were only working with a labour strength of 30 percent as construction work was allowed only during the daytime. There is likely to be at least three to four months of delay but we will try and make up with simultaneous construction activity, emphasis on mechanisation and enhancing the labour force, which we hope would return in the next fortnight. Restarting work again will depend from project to project and location to location. As far as losses are concerned, they would depend on the size of the company and the project," said Amit Modi, President-elect Credai (Western UP) and director, ABA Corp.
Gaurav Gupta, president, CREDAI-Ghaziabad, also welcomed the order, saying that resources - both raw material and labour will now be utilsied fully.
"This was much needed as RERA penalities are stiff and completion deadlines have to be met," he said.
"Lifting of the ban on overnight construction by the apex court is a big relief to all under construction projects in Delhi-NCR. With this decision, work will get on full swing," said Ashish Bhutani, CEO, Bhutani Group.
Yash Miglani, MD Migsun Group, also welcomed the apex court's decision and hoped that under-construction projects would now be delivered on time.
According to Anuj Puri, Chairman - ANAROCK Property Consultants, "The construction ban was based on a very sound fundament - the city's environment deserved an opportunity to recuperate. The resumption of construction is based on an economic imperative. Neither the ban nor its lifting can be argued with, but we hope that the real estate industry and the environment find a workable way of coexisting.""A business-as-usual approach to real estate construction will have predictable results. All decisions related to real estate and the environment – especially in a city like Delhi – must we weighed carefully. Newer construction technologies which have a lower impact on the environment are the need of the hour. Likewise, greater weightage and incentivization must be given to green buildings which have a lower footprint on the environment during their entire lifecycle," Puri added.