18-year-long battle for house still not over for late Vasant Karode

It can be only termed a case of justice denied for Vasant Karode,whose fight to get possession of a twin bungalow of 1,000 sq ft that he purchased in Baner in 1991,went on for 18 long years.

Written by Anuradha Mascarenhas | Pune | Published: March 11, 2009 2:05 am

It can be only termed a case of justice denied for Vasant Karode,whose fight to get possession of a twin bungalow of 1,000 sq ft that he purchased in Baner in 1991,went on for 18 long years. The District Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum where the case was being argued,first passed a judgment in favour of Karode in 1993. This was upheld at the state and national levels subsequently. Still Karode never got possession of his house.

Finally,a non-bailable arrest warrant was issued against city builder Uday Manerikar this Monday,but it came a little late for Karode,who passed away in November last. Now,it is left to Karode’s son Ashish Karode to continue the fight and hope that he can get justice so that his father’s soul may rest in peace.

Ashish Karode who stays in Delhi was in Pune for the hearing and told The Indian Express that his father who had retired as an executive with an oil company had put in his life savings to buy his dream house. “However,under one ruse or the other,the builder did not let him occupy the house,’’ rued Ashish.

Advocate N P Bhog who represented the case at the forum said that Vasant Karode had entered into a ‘composite agreement’ with the builder for purchasing a twin bungalow of 1000 sq ft that was to be built on an area of 1000 sq ft. But over the over the last 18 years the builder made additional constructions and occupied the whole bungalow space,said Bhog.

The sale agreement of Rs three lakh was made between Karode and the builder on May 4,1991. However the latter failed to deliver possession of the bungalow to Karode and from there on the matters got into the purview of the Pune district consumer redressal forum. The forum,in 1993 allowed Karode’s complaint and directed the builder to give peaceful possession of the house to Karode. State Consumer Redressal Commission upheld the order on October 3,2001,but after a lapse of eight long years. The National Commission too confirmed the order of the state commission,but quickly,in 2002. Subsequently the builder’s appeal against the orders was dismissed in the Supreme Court in 2006,after a four-year delay. The apex court had also directed the builder to hand over possession of the bungalow to Karode. But it took another couple of years before the builder eventually agreed to hand over possession of the premises – on February 2,2009,an agreement he failed to adhere to. In an order on March 9 the Pune district consumer redressal forum called for the issue of a non-bailable warrant against Manerikar. The forum presided by P K Gaikwad in its order ruled that the non-bailable warrant should be executed against the builder by the Chatushrungi police station. Meanwhile,Karode’s son is still waiting for that his late father’s dream – to get possession of a house that he paid for – to come true.

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