Mumbai: The State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (SCDRC), in two separate orders, has directed an Andheri-based developer to give Khar residents the flats they had booked within six months of the order or refund Rs37 lakh each with 12% interest per annum for the amount they paid. Compensation of Rs3.50 lakh has also been awarded for mental agony and litigation costs.
The order was passed on a complaint by Khar residents Amrataben Nanji Faria and Manish Nanji Faria against Vaidehi Akash Housing Pvt Ltd, its managing directors and directors, New DN Nagar CHSL and Rustomjee Reality Pvt Ltd. The two buyers had paid Rs37 lakh each to Vaidehi for a flat each on the 18th floor of a building.
Vaidehi had agreed to redevelop the building which was in dilapidated condition and entered into an agreement with the society in Dec 2005. The BMC and MHADA had both sanctioned plans for redevelopment. The first five opponents had entered into an agreement with both the buyers, gave an allotment letter in 2008, and agreed to give each a flat on the 18th floor measuring 540sq ft (carpet area) by the end of April 2012. However, to date, they did not receive a flat or a refund.
The first five opponents contended that Vaidehi was out of the picture and the society had made an agreement with Rustomjee for both market and rehabilitation components and the latter was responsible. The society said that Vaidehi had made several defaults and breaches and hence they cancelled the agreement with them in 2010. A public notice was also issued about the same. Rustomjee, on the other hand, stated that the building in which the flat was to be given, no plan was given for the same even before the agreement was terminated by the society with Vaidehi and that there was no agreement between the complainants and them.
During the hearing, the commission noted that Vaidehi was free to develop the remaining plot and to fulfil its obligations in respect of the flat owners including the complainant. It also said that the matter had reached the High Court where Rustomjee was absolved. The commission stated that Vaidehi had taken Rs37 lakh for each flat but not giving it was a deficiency in service.
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