THE PANCHKULA Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has held a real estate company guilty of deficiency in service and directed it to pay Rs 1.5 lakh as compensation to a Panchkula resident for failing to give possession of a flat within the stipulated time. The company has also been directed to hand over the physical possession of the flat before November 30.
Lalit Gupta and his wife Anuradha, residents of Sector 7, had purchased a four-bedroom flat on the first floor for Rs 52.13 lakh in a project of DLF Homes, Panchkula, in Sector 3, Pinjore-Kalka, Urban Complex, in February 2010. They deposited a sum of Rs 6 lakh as a booking amount and entered into an agreement in January 2011, as per which the DLF committed that the physical possession would be offered within 24 months from the date of agreement, with an extension of 12 months. The couple paid Rs 41.25 lakh upto March 31, 2015. But they were not provided physical possession of the flat after passing of five years.
It was also alleged that at the time of floating the scheme, DLF did not have necessary sanction from the competent authorities to construct the flats. DLF submitted in the court that the delay was due to stay orders from the Supreme Court from April 2012 to December 2012 and also because they had to take certain permissions from the competent authorities.
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However, taking the case into consideration, the court stated that DLF’s argument — that delay was caused as they got statutory approvals from the competent authorities late — is not tenable, as they ought to have obtained all the approvals initially. “The initial time of two years taken for seeking such approvals amounts to clear deficiency on their part,” said the court.
Highlighting that DLF had assured the couple that possession was to be given within the stipulated time, the court stated that they had failed to deliver the possession. “By not abiding by the commitment, the company was not only deficient in rendering service, but also indulged in unfair trade practice,” stated the court. The court directed DLF Homes, Panchkula, to pay a compensation of Rs 1.5 lakh to the couple for causing mental agony and physical harassment to them and Rs 50,000 as litigation costs. It was also directed to hand over physical possession of the flat before November 30.