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Commercial activity in residential premises

Page no : 2

Prashant Bhat (Vice-President (Legal & Land Acquisition))     10 July 2012




The Constitution of India while ensuring under Article 19(1)(g) to all citizens the right to practice any trade, business or profession has maintained a clear distinction between carrying on a trade or business as against practicing a profession. What a practicing professional renders to his client is his services essentially based on his qualification, personal skill and intellectual capacity and is dependent on their professional equipment, knowledge and efficiency. A profession is a vocation or occupation requiring special usually advanced education and skill. The work and skill involved in a profession is predominantly mental or intellectual rather than physical or manual.

Office of a professional does not conform to section 2(4) of the Bombay Shops and Establishments Act, 1948 and is not a commercial establishment and user of residential premises just to provide a professional service does tantamount to change of user and restraining the same rather amounts to an unreasonable restriction violative of Article 19(1)(g) of the Constitution.

Thus, a profession is a profession and it is not a business. A professional does not deal with production or sale of commodities. No exchange of goods, production of property of any kind or buying, selling and exchanging of article happens in the office of a professional that can be described as “commerce”.

- Prashant Bhat, Vashi, Navi Mumbai.


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Chandrakant Mody (Director)     13 February 2013

i am having the flat in Mumbai a building which is not the coop society and is on the rent , can i give on the rent to a Doctor who will do the practice from that flat , do the doctor have to take the permission from the BMC or not or will it be called a commercial activity or not , though the approval from land lord is there to give for the practice

if any clarification from BMC is there please let me know

your early response in this will be better

lokesh (.)     02 October 2014

Thanx for your valuable information.
I have similar issue. Our neighbor has given her house ( we live in chawl) to her nephew on rent.  He has started using it for store house for a year, we did not object as it was inside there house. But now he is trying to extend this property for store house ( it contains junk foods like "pizza/pasta packets,energy drinks"). he has even taken help of area security guard(who try to be bully in this area) to build the area. How to stop from doing this. Secondly how come municipal cooperation and these companies provide them license to do such activity in residence area.

We are from Mumbai

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