Chandigarh Sector 51 housing scheme: Citing high costs, around 20 applicants surrender flatshttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/chandigarh/chandigarh-sector-51-housing-scheme-citing-high-costs-around-20-applicants-surrender-flats/

Chandigarh Sector 51 housing scheme: Citing high costs, around 20 applicants surrender flats

Clause of making full payment in three months is another deterrent.

WITHIN A month of the draw of lots, around 20 successful applicants of Sector 51 Self Financing Housing Scheme of Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) have surrendered their apartments citing high costs.

In addition to high price, the clause of making full payment in three months is the other main reason for applicants giving up claim to the apartments. All successful applicants of Scheme A and Scheme B are required to make 100 per cent payment by October 22. As per officials, there are more applicants ready to surrender their flats and are likely to do so in the next few days.

Out of the total 200 flats, the board has fixed a tentative price of Rs 69 lakh each for as many as 150 flats under different categories, excluding other charges, making it the most expensive scheme to date.

All the 150 flats have been allocated to successful applicants through draw of lots while the remaining 50 flats were auctioned under Scheme B with the highest bid of Rs 77.50 lakh against the reserve price of Rs 69 lakh.

CHB chairman Maninder Singh acknowledged high price and three-month time period for making full payment as reasons for applicants surrendering their flats. “We have around 80 applicants on waiting list. The vacant flats will be allocated as per the waiting list,” he said.

The board will refund the earnest money to the applicants who have surrendered their flats, after deducting 10 per cent from the amount.

Unhappy with the high cost, a group of allottees have submitted a memorandum to the CHB chairman urging a reduction in the price. J S Chaudhary, one of the successful applicants, said that the scheme was unreasonably expensive. “I am struggling to raise money for making the full payment. I will have to dig into all my savings and retirement benefits for the flat,” said Chaudhary, who retired from National Cooperative Development.

Apart from Rs 69 lakh, every allottee will have to pay 3 per cent of the total amount for deed of conveyance, and Rs 50,000 which is to be deposited in the account of Residents’ Welfare Association for maintenance/operation of common areas and common services.

Kamaljit Singh Panchi, advisor of Chandigarh Federation of Property Dealers, stated that the flats falling under middle income group (MIG) were over-priced. “This is for the first time CHB has asked the allottees to make the payment in three months. In earlier housing schemes, CHB had taken payment in instalments,” said Panchi.

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The board has started the process of hiring a consultant for rapid environmental impact assessment study and post-environmental clearance monitoring for the housing scheme. According to the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change regulations, any project to construct a building over 20,000 sq metres has to get prior clearance.