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Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Residents welcome Supreme Court order, 9-year legal battle against construction ends

The top court upheld a 2014 Allahabad High Court judgment on the demolition of the two towers of Emerald Court, located in Noida Sector 93A, and said the demolition must be completed within three months.

Written by Ashna Butani | New Delhi |
Updated: September 1, 2021 8:29:31 am
Residents welcome Supreme Court order, 9-year legal battle against construction endsSupertech has also been ordered to pay the RWA a cost of Rs two crores within one month by the Supreme Court. (Express photo)

Residents and RWA members of Supertech Emerald Court welcomed the Supreme Court order to demolish the twin towers in the same complex.

The top court upheld a 2014 Allahabad High Court judgment on the demolition of the two towers of Emerald Court, located in Noida Sector 93A, and said the demolition must be completed within three months. Supertech Limited, the developer, has also been asked to refund all existing flat purchasers the amount they invested along with an interest of 12% per annum in two months.

Pankaj Verma, general secretary of the RWA, said, “We had initially objected to the construction because the new towers would comprise around 900 flats. Residents of these 900 flats were shown our lawn, swimming pool, tennis court etc. This means that our flats, comprising 660 apartments, would be merged with the two towers. This would have led to congestion and chaos.” He added that even fire services would not be able to reach a few buildings due to the construction.

The objections by residents to the twin towers date back to 2009, when construction began by Supertech without grant of sanction from authorities. In November 2009, Noida authorities sanctioned a revised plan where the number of towers had increased from 15 to 17. The RWA then went to the Allahabad High Court in 2012 against the move.

Residents had also raised concerns that ventilation and sunlight would be blocked due to the construction of the two towers. The land was earlier a green area, where people could walk, they said.

Rajesh Rana, president of the RWA, said, “There was unbearable noise and pollution every day once construction began. We purchased flats in these apartments based on the amenities provided… But they were being compromised due to the construction of the two towers.”

The Noida Authority said in a statement that it will comply with the SC order. Officials said every point in the order will be followed thoroughly and demolition will be done with the help of an expert body in three months.

Noida Authority CEO Ritu Maheshwari flagged that the matter was brought to the notice of senior officials later and a departmental inquiry has been initiated against an erring officer. “An official had been attending court meetings for seven years but did not bring it to the notice of senior officers in time. Departmental action has been initiated against the official,” she said.

Maheshwari said the Authority will also ensure action against department officials found guilty of violating rules.

There were 915 flats in the two towers (Tower 16 and Tower 17), which are on plot 4. The total area in plot no 4 is 54,819 sq metres.

As many as 633 bookings had been made for flats in these towers, of which 133 people have invested in other projects by the same developer. After an opt-out option was provided, 248 opted for refunds while 252 purchasers remained committed to the project.

Founded 32 years ago in the NCR, Supertech has been involved in the construction of a number of high rises in North India. It has projects based primarily in Delhi-NCR regions such as Noida, Greater Noida, Meerut, and Gurgaon. According to its website, it has projects spread over 50 locations.

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