Be diligent with those property papers

Vatsala Dhananjay, a real estate lawyer, is a voracious reader and wants to start an intellectual club where ideas are discussed and developed.

A real estate lawyer by profession, Vatsala Dhananjay, moved to Bangalore in 1990 from Coimbatore. After completing her law degree in 1993 from SJRC Law College, she got married and moved to Koramangala. She has been a lawyer for nearly two decades now.

Vatsala Dhananjay. Pic: Abhishek Angad

You been in Koramangala since 1993, how have seen it growing?

When we came here it was very quiet and had many vacant plots. It was not even in BBMP limits. Suddenly it was a buzz that koramangala is a good place and lot of commercial activities took place.

Did you always know you want to be a lawyer?

Most of my family members are from this profession. My father thought that I had potential to be a lawyer. Though I went to law school, I was not so sure. Later I felt one aspect of work – transfer of property or chamber work-will suit me rather than going to into litigation.

Can you talk about some challenges do you face in this profession?

Once I passed legal recognition to a site in Laughing Waters layout since all the documents looked genuine, but later I came to know that it was fake. The original genesis of the title (from 1963) was fake and even with my experience, I could not find it. There is now a case against the entire layout.

Issues like this happen because of builders’ malpractices alone or also because of  lacunae from the government side?

Government is just one of them. If you are not diligent, you can trip and fall with Prior Agreement Holder, same with undisclosed family trees.

There are also a lot of unfair trade practices by builders. For example, customers have  the right to see the details of the title, prior to booking a flat or a residential place. But sometimes these builders refuse to do so without taking the booking money. Before you sign the agreement, you must scrutinise the authenticity of the project.

So after all these malpractices, do you think real estate in Karnataka, specifically Bangalore, needs regulation?

It’s high time there should be a regulation. The Real Estate regulatory and development bill should be passed though many builders are lobbying against it. I The under belly of this is that there is a huge nexus between the builders and government staff, whosoever allot them and the sanction plans. It involves a lot of money. For example, de-notification. They will notify 100 acres for a 70 acre planned layout and then again de-notify 30 acres. This involves lot of exchange of money and it’s a big racket. The nexus mafia between government agencies and builders are very strong. The BDA has willingly colluded to it

You started a group called ‘masterminds group’ inspired by a book. What kind of books do you read?

I am a voracious reader and I read self help books, books on question of evolution, philosophy, scientific terms, game theory on the question on probability of life. I even read a lot of Hindu philosophy. (The group is not functional as of now)

Future plans?

I want to start intellectual club where ideas are discussed and developed. It could be on topics like music, philosophy, astronomy and politics. Interested people may get in touch with me at

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