Fair trade regulator CCI has rejected a complaint of anti-competitive practices against DLF pertaining to 1995-96 period saying competition regulations were not place at that time. While dismissing the allegations, Competition Commission of India (CCI) also said the informants have approached it “only as an after thought” since their petitions were rejected by the Supreme Court. The allegations were made against DLF Universal with regard to its projects in Gurgaon, Haryana.
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It was alleged that DLF Universal, a subsidiary of DLF Ltd, abused its dominant market position and failed to deliver apartments booked by informants in two residential projects. The complaint was filed by three individuals who had booked one residential flat in each of the two residential projects. Among others, it was alleged that the company demanded unjustified amounts towards holding charges, imposed hidden costs and onerous conditions through the agreements.
The Commission noted that the cases pertain to the period 1995-1996 and any alleged abuse of dominance by DLF Universal were made at a time when the Section 4 of the Competition Act was yet to be enacted. “… the Commission is of the view that, if the Commission were to make an assessment of dominance or alleged abusive conditions imposed by OP (DLF) in the present cases, such assessment would essentially relate to a time when either the (Competition) Act itself was not enacted or Section 4 of the Act was not in force,” the watchdog said in an order dated December 5.
Section 4 relates to abuse of dominant position. According to CCI, the informants had moved the State Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum in 2003, contested the appeal in National Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission and also moved Special Leave Petitions in the Supreme Court previously for seeking redressal of the grievances. “… it is thus, clear that the informants have approached the Commission only as an afterthought after their petitions were dismissed by the Supreme Court,” it added.