Madras HC slaps imposes costs on apartment association for suppression of information, ET RealEstate

July 10, 2023

<p>File photo</p>
File photo

CHENNAI: Those who file cases suppressing key information from courts beware. Madras high court has imposed Rs 500 as a cost on each of 239 members of a residents’ welfare association for suppressing facts and trying to stall the construction of new blocks of residential buildings by their promoter.

Justice R M T Teekaa Raman directed the Chennai Hiranandani Residents’ Welfare Association to pay the cost totaling Rs 1.19 lakh to the promoter — Hiranandani Developers Private Limited — for causing inconvenience and pecuniary loss.

According to the petitioner, House of Hiranandani, Chennai, is a township project being developed by Hiranandani Developers on 120 acres in Egattur village in phases.

Initially, the promoter constructed 14 towers in two phases along with a school, and two clubhouses, one for each phase.

In 2012, seven towers in Phase-I were handed over to buyers and the clubhouse was made operational in 2014.

While Phase II is almost complete, no steps were taken to commence the construction of a clubhouse. But the builder started to construct two residential buildings in the place earmarked for the Phase-II clubhouse, the association alleged.

It contended that it is impermissible to convert the use of land mentioned in the plan approval and to any such change in plan approval can be effected only after all the co-owners express no objection.

Further, there cannot be a withdrawal of a common facility like the clubhouse after the completion of a sale of the apartments, it said.

Denying the allegations, the developer submitted that the second clubhouse was in the process of construction and that it was to be completed in due course. It also furnished photographs as proof.

They alleged that the petitioner association had suppressed the material facts in order to get an interim order from the court and stall the construction.

Furnishing copies of notices exchanged between the petitioner and promoter, they added said the association was asking for a waiver of nonactive membership charges, and they wanted a free membership to certain amenities. The present plea has been moved to arm-twist the developer to get the request approved, they added.

Concurring with the submissions, justice Teekka Raman dismissed the plea and imposed the cost. The court further vacated an interim stay against construction by the developer.

  • Published On Jul 9, 2023 at 11:00 AM IST

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