Finally,flat buyers will also be owners

Delhi High Court has set the ball rolling to guarantee buyers “exclusive ownership rights”.

Written by Utkarsh Anand | New Delhi | Published: January 16, 2012 1:34 am

High Court tells authorities to execute deed of apartment,make sale and transfer of flats easier

To ensure that apartment buyers do not have to struggle to sell their property,obtain loan on it or leave it to their children as legally recognised legacy,the Delhi High Court has set the ball rolling to guarantee buyers “exclusive ownership rights”.

A bench headed by Acting Chief Justice A K Sikri has noted that the authorities must execute for flat buyers a “deed of apartment” as per the Delhi Apartment Ownership Act — which allows “heritable right”.

The court also said it was “unfortunate” that despite a 2010 court ruling and a law in place,flat-owners had to seek court’s help to hold,use,enjoy,transfer and mortgage their flats,

Till now,owners use a power of attorney to transfer their property as they do not have the absolute right on an indivisible land.

The deed,as suggested by the High Court,will also give an owner undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant to such apartment,besides a right to form own association,membership on a par with original allottees,voting rights and right to fix maintenance.

At present,the title of such property rests with the society,making securing bank loans tough. The directive seeks to change this.

In its draft judgment,the court said deputy commissioners (DCs) of each district in Delhi should be given the task of gathering required information and documents from the owners,builders and government agencies to execute deeds of apartments.

Justice Sikri,who had passed the 2010 judgment,is adjudicating the plea of petitioner O S Bajpai to ensure implementation of the verdict,whereby the land owning agencies — L&DO and DDA — were asked to appoint competent authorities in accordance with the Act to register the deeds.

During the hearings,the court noted that the number of such officers appointed was not sufficient. The court was not impressed by the authorities plea that execution of the deed was not possible in cases where promoters or builders did not hand out the required documents.

“We are of the view that effective steps have not been taken so far (as) exploring the possibility of compelling the promoters/builders without the need for filing of suits or arbitration proceedings,” the court said.

It also took note of the fact that the law did not prescribe any penalty for the promoters who do not execute the deeds.

The parties in the case have been asked to respond to the draft judgment — the points in which were made during the hearings — following which the court’s verdict would be made final.

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