Delay In Handing Over Flat, Real Estate Co Asked To Refund 76l, ET RealEstate

July 18, 2023

LUDHIANA: District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission has ordered a real estate company to refund the advance payment of Rs 76.4 lakh, along with interest, to a Ludhiana-based couple for delay in handing them over a flat in Gurgaon.

The commission, comprising its president Sanjeev Batra and members Jaswinder Singh and Monika Bhagat also ordered Gurgaaon-based BlackBerry Realcom Private Limited to pay litigation expenses worth Rs 20,000 to the customers, Naveen Jain and his wife Ritu Jain, of Tagore Nagar.

The complainants said they had booked an apartment in August 2013, and the construction- was started on February 13, 2014. In April 2015, they signed an agreement and were allotted a 870-sqft studio apartment worth Rs 80.67 lakh. They were to pay the money in instalments.

As per the agreement, the apartment was to be handed over to them within 36 months, or by February 13, 2017; if the firm failed to do so, it was liable to pay 9% interest as compensation to the couple. The couple also got a house loan of Rs 50.5 lakh in July 2015. Till 2018, they had paid Rs 79,10,741, including service tax, to the firm.

Finally, on July 28, 2018, the firm issued a letter for possession to the couple, but they sought a refund. The firm cancelled the allotment and gave them five cheques worth the refund amount in December 2019. However, instead of encashing the cheques, the couple issued a legal notice to the firm in February 2020, and filed a complaint in December 2020.

The counsel for the firm contended that it was the complainants who neglected to take the possession of the apartment and did not even encash the cheques.

The commission held that the complainants were entitled to compensation for deficiency of service and unfair trade practice on the part of the firm. It ordered the firm to refund Rs 76,40,016, along with 9% interest till June 30, 2020, the date of issuance of fifth and last cheque.

As a compensation, it also ordered an additional interest of 6% from that date to the date of actual payment of refund within 30 days of the receipt of order copy, failing which another 3% interest would be applicable. The commission held that the couple can also seek reimbursement of tax worth Rs 2.7 lakh.

  • Published On Jul 18, 2023 at 09:08 AM IST

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