In a recent post that is going viral on social media, a resident of Gururam’s Palm Grove Heights Society has said that he and his friend were humiliated by the members of RWA when their “moral policing” not only made them face a horrifying experience but also made him question if he and other bachelor residents in this country have any rights in the housing society.
Gururam’s Palm Grove Heights Society. Facebook
The Facebook post, which was shared on October 27 by a resident called Mohit Agarwal, spoke about his friend from abroad, who is in town and needed a place to live for few days. Mohit, who himself had studied abroad, and understood his friend’s plight thus immediately volunteered to host her till she found a place to live.
Landlord’s mail to RWA president. Facebook
According to Mohit’s post, the security guard at the society gate stopped his friend from entering and said, “girls are not allowed at unmarried boys’ house!”
While above kind of “moral policing” is commonly seen in many societies across India, a lot of them are open about the rules and make it known to their tenants well in advance.
While Mohit goes on to call such rules “illegal”, according to legal experts at Goenka Law Associates, the housing societies can indeed frame their own laws as these rules for day-to-day functioning.
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“These guidelines are typically framed under the Co-operative Societies Act, which is a Central Act. This provides specific guidelines for a society to be registered with the municipal corporations, its governance structures, common area maintenance rights, dos & don’ts, accounting practices and various other covenants related to leasing/ purchasing a house within the society.”
The RWA’s apathy towards its residents though doesn’t just end there.
This too, unfortunately, falls under legal rights of the RWA as the same Co-operative Societies Act offers a degree of flexibility to societies allowing them to add regulations of their own.
Further, though the landlord has the legal right to rent or lease his property and allow his/her tenant to have certain benefits, the housing society also gets to have a say in it as the flat is situated inside the walls of the housing society.
He further added that while bachelor residents’ frustration towards the administration is understandable, they themselves are helpless as they cannot interfere in matters related to the RWA.
He further added that while such “ridiculous” rules have been imposed, the RWA has in no way ever stopped them from renting out these apartments to people who are unmarried.
To know more about bye-law 43(2) of the Co-operative Housing Societies Act, please read the full format here.