The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) has ordered the developers of ‘Gold Souk Golf Links’ housing project in Sector-17, Sohna, Haryana, to fully refund the payments made by 20 homebuyers as it failed to complete the construction despite the promise of possession in June 2019.
The consumer court noted that the developers has not given any material to establish that the completion of construction and offer of possession was delayed due to force majeure or reasons beyond their control.
“There is no justification for the delay in completing the construction and handing over the possession,” the consumer court said, directing the developers to refund full amount to the homebuyers with compensation in the form of simple interest at 8% per annum from the respective dates of deposit.
The 20 homebuyers, represented by advocate Aditya Parolia, argued that they had booked apartments ranging from 2 to 4 BHK having area from 1,350 sqft. to 2,350 sqft. in the project between 2012 and 2013. As per the apartment buyer agreements, possession of the booked apartment was to be delivered within 48 months with a grace period of six months.
Advocate Parolia contended that his clients had deposited 30% to 70% of the total sale consideration with the developers, but they have failed to even start the construction at the site even after more than five years from the date of initial payment.
On February 09, 2018, some of the home buyers visited the site to check the progress of the project but they were shocked to observe that there was no sign of any construction activity, the plea said.
Advocate Parolia argued that the home buyers are “suffering extreme kind of mental distress, pain and agony” on account of possession of the apartments not being handed over to them within the committed period.
“The harassment is two-fold as on one hand, they are paying huge interest on the money paid to the developers while on the other hand, they are incurring huge cost/rent/loss of rent due to non-availability of the said residential apartments,” advocate Parolia said.
Taking note of the submission, the consumer court remarked that the home buyers “cannot be made to wait indefinitely for the delivery of possession and the act of the developers to retain the amounts deposited by the complainants [home buyers], is not only an act of Deficiency of Service but also of unfair trade practice”.