SC to examine credentials of firm willing to take up Amrapali projects
The Supreme Court today said it would like to be assured of the financial standing and credentials of a company which is willing to take over some of the projects of embattled Amrapali Group, observing that the home buyers “cannot be just thrown to a frying pan”. The top court asked Noida-based Galaxy Group, which is willing to complete the three projects of Amrapali, to furnish its financial standing, its track record and an undertaking for timely completion of the projects.
“Home buyers cannot be just thrown to a frying fan. The flat buyers should get their dues. We would like to know the profile of the individuals associated with the company which is willing to take over the projects. The idea is to enable them wriggle out of the difficult situation. We want to be doubly assured,” a bench of Justices Arun Mishra and U U Lalit said.
The bench said in order to ensure that the flat buyers get their dues, it had asked the Amrapali Group to furnish the business plan for completion of the pending projects. “We want to know the financial standing of the company which proposes to take over the projects. The track record of the promoters, financers and investors who are in the company. The financial work done by the group and their track record of adhering to the time line for completion of the projects,” it said.
The bench said the Galaxy Group has to furnish an undertaking that it will complete the projects in the set deadline.
Senior advocate Ranjit Kumar, appearing for the Amrapali Group, said the Galaxy Group have proposed to take three projects of the company–Saphire-I, Saphire-II and Amrapali Leisure Park at Greater Noida. He said that in Saphire-I project only 32 flats remain to be completed and 1001 flats have been handed over to the home buyers till now.
“As far as Saphire-II project is concerned, 550 flats are to be completed and till now 758 had been given to the home buyers. In Leisure Park project which is the bigger one, 2993 units are to be completed and work is in progress in tower E-1 and E-2,” he said.
Kumar said the Galaxy Group which has done work worth Rs 3467 Crore till now has shown interest to complete these three pending projects of Amrapali Group.
Counsel for Galaxy Group said they were willing to take over the projects and complete them, only if the home buyers have no objection to it.
“Let us be very clear, if a co-developer has to take over the projects, then it has to submit an affidavit and clarify that they are not facing similar difficult situation in their pending projects and adhering to the time line for completion of projects. Such individual or company, who is on the other side of the fence, will not be selected,” the bench said.
Kumar informed the court that for Saphire-I and II, around Rs 55 crore will be needed for completing the remaining flats which according to the Amrapali Group can be completed from 3 to 15 months period.
The bench then said that it would ask the co-developer to first invest money and then sell the flats and get money, as it does not want to put additional burden on the home buyers as of now.
Counsel for Galaxy Group said it was ready to complete the project but it would be appropriate if the court permits that funds be given in instalments as the projects would require huge investments.
The bench said it needed to work out the modalities to supervise the projects but would not allow the money of one project to be transferred to other projects. “It is high time that we pass an order prohibiting transferring the funds collected for one project diverted to some other projects,” it said.
The bench posted the matter for further hearing on May 2.
In a bid to ascertain whether there was any “siphoning” of funds, the top court had earlier asked the group to provide details of the money it had collected from the homebuyers and how much it had invested in its housing projects.
The Amrapali Group had then given the details of its ongoing housing projects, stages of work and the likely time to complete construction.