Municipality refuses to help tenants get refund of rent

DUBAI — The Dubai Municipality (DM) has made it clear that it will not take the responsibility of making the landlords refund the rents collected in advance from the tenants who are being evicted from the shared villas.

By Joy Sengupta (Our staff reporter)

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Published: Wed 28 May 2008, 9:12 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 7:14 PM

A senior official of the civic body also stressed that no grace period will be given to the tenants who have been served with the eviction notices. The eviction notice was first issued by the DM on May 20 to villa residents in various parts of Dubai.

However, the 10-day grace agreed upon by the DM's building section officials in Rashidiya recently following requests by the villa residents of the area would be honoured, Omar Mohammed Abdul Rahman, Head of the Building Inspection Section at the civic body, said.

The municipality had nothing to do with the refund of rents paid in advance to landlords and estate agents. However, they have the option of approaching the Dubai Rent Committee at the Dubai Municipal Council, he added.

However, many families, which were hoping for the municipality's intervention in this regard, expressed concern that approaching the Rent Committee might not solve their problem as the rooms in the villas have been sublet not directly by the landlord but middlemen. And subletting is illegal.

Abdul Rahman said the municipality is not running any campaign against sharing of flats by more than one family at the moment. The DM would take necessary action if it gets any complaints from neighbours.

"There are rules and regulations regarding the environment and public safety in flats. Partitions are not allowed without the municipality permission," he said.

However, the campaign against multiple families staying in villas would continue. He said that it would be spread across all areas of the emirate in phases.

"The campaign commenced in the Rashidiya area. After conducting inspections, we have served notices on the families staying in villas in the area to vacate as only one family can stay in a villa," said Abdul Rahman

The notice says the Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) will disconnect water and electricity supplies to the villas if the families sharing them do not vacate them immediately.

The official clarified that the eviction notices were first issued to bachelors and single women staying in villas in 2005.

"As part of this campaign, we had issued warnings to many families staying in one villa after creating illegal partitions. We had alerted families that this would not be allowed and is against the rules and regulations," he said.

"Amenities like water and electricity supply and sewage are provided according to the original plans of the buildings. When the residential unit is used by more than one family, it becomes difficult to manage, resulting in the accumulation of wastes, affecting health safety and environment," said Abdul Rahman.

"The municipality had notified the building owners and real estate companies not to rent out these premises to bachelors and to allow only one family to stay in a single residential unit. We had also informed them that all supplies would be disconnected and the future transactions with them stopped," he pointed out.

The residents said that they were disappointed. "It seems that the authorities do not want to understand our basic problem. Now, we have no option but to either go back to our home country or stay here skipping meals as all the money will go on rent," said a disappointed Sundaram, who lives in a villa in Rashidiya.

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