Updated: October 4, 2021 6:52:18 pm
The Supreme Court Monday dismissed Supertech Ltd group’s prayer to modify the court’s order directing demolition of twin towers in its Noida project in such a way as to save one of the towers.
The real estate firm had filed a miscellaneous application seeking relief. Dismissing it, a bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and B V Nagarathna pointed out that “grant of such a relief is in the nature of a review of the judgment of this court. In successive decisions, this court has held that filing of applications styled as ‘miscellaneous applications’ or ‘applications for clarification’ in the guise of a review is not to be countenanced… The attempt in the miscellaneous application is clearly to seek a substantive modification of the judgment of this court. Such an attempt is not permissible in a miscellaneous application… For the above reasons, there is no substance in the miscellaneous application”.
While stating that it was not seeking a review of the SC decision, Supertech had contended in the application that the basis of the SC judgment was that the minimum distance required under the building regulations has not been complied with and there is a violation of the green area. The builder group prayed that it be allowed to comply with these conditions by slicing a portion of one of the towers while retaining the other.
Opposing this, Advocate Jayant Bhushan, appearing for the petitioner home buyers, said the application proceeds on the misconceived basis that there were only two objections in the judgment.
He pointed out that in addition to the two, the court had also referred to various other violations including non-compliance of provisions of the 2010 UP Apartments Act and a reduction of the undivided interest of flat purchasers.
On August 31, the apex court had directed demolition of two 40-storey towers, comprising about 850 flats, finding that they flouted regulations regarding distance to be maintained between buildings and fire safety.
The court also held that the towers, in the National Capital Region, were constructed “through acts of collusion” between officials of NOIDA (New Okhla Industrial Development Authority) and the group, and gave the go-ahead for prosecuting them.
Upholding a ruling by the Allahabad High Court, the court directed the two towers, Apex and Ceyane in Supertech’s Emerald Court project, to be demolished within three months, with the expenses to be borne by the developer.
Supertech will also refund all those who had purchased flats in the towers within two months at an annual interest rate of 12%, the court said. Besides this, Supertech has been ordered to pay Rs 2 crore to the Residents’ Welfare Association of 15 other towers constructed as part of the original plan, which was then revised multiple times and the twin towers squeezed in.
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