NCDRC directs Amrapali to deposit over Rs 10 crore for delay in Noida project
The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) on Tuesday directed real estate firm Amrapali to deposit delay penalties for 96 home buyers of its Sapphire project in Noida within one month as per their builder-buyer agreements, an amount which will exceed Rs 10 crore.
The consumer commission, chaired by Justice VK Jain, has also directed managing director Anil Kumar Sharma to be personally present before the commission on the next date of hearing on March 7, 2018, due to non-compliance with previous order of the commission. The forum had in July directed Sharma to furnish an affidavit providing timelines within which the project shall be completed.
Amrapali Sapphire Developers is a special purpose vehicle (SPV), under Amrapali Ultra Homes, which is under insolvency resolution proceedings at present.
According to Saikrishna Rajagopal, managing partner of law firm Saikrishna & Associates, which represented the buyers in the court, since the lead member of the SPV developing the project is already undergoing insolvency resolution process, there is an imminent threat that the SPV will also meet the same fate. “Thus, there was an urgent need to protect homebuyers atleast to the tune of contractual delay penalty promised to them,” he said.
“Home buyers have different delay compensation amounts mentioned in their contracts, and considering the minimum delay compensation of Rs 10 per square feet, the total amount will come to around Rs 10 crore. However, the original amount will be higher,” informed HC Chopda, an Amrapali home buyer and one of the applicants in the case.
Amrapali in its response said the company will approach NCDRC seeking review of the order passed today as many complainants in the complaints filed have taken possession by issuing no objection and condoning the delay caused in handing over of possession due to land acquisition related issues, agitation of farmers and NGT banning construction work within 10 kilometers of Okhla Bird Sanctury.
The company claimed that delay in submission of complaint and pleading documents by home buyers did not allow it to submit affidavit providing timelines for completion of the project on time.
Amrapali Sapphire project located in Sector 45, Noida was launched in 2009 and comprises two phases of around 1,000 flats and 1,309 flats each. While the first phase is complete, the second phase is far from over.