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HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Chandigarh, November 23, 2013
The state consumer disputes redressal commission, Chandigarh, has directed a city-based architect and builder to pay Rs. 75,000 as compensation for not completing an assigned work in time. As per the directive issued on November 19, architect-cum-builder Sandeep Prabhakar of Sector 16 will have to pay Rs. 5.37 lakh to Rita Singh, former principal, Government Home Science College, Sector 10, along with interest at 9%. The architect has also been directed to pay Rs. 1.25 lakh to Singh on account of the flaws in the quality of work and substandard material used in renovating her flat in Sector 70, SAS Nagar, besides Rs. 30,000 as cost of litigation.

The direction was issued while dismissing an appeal filed by Prabhakar against the consumer forum's order of June, holding him deficient in rendering services.

Singh, in her complaint before the consumer forum, had said that she had hired the services of the Prabhakar for the renovation of her flat in January 2011, for which he had demanded Rs. 13 lakh. Singh claimed that she was to retire in February 2011 and had to vacate her official accommodation. The builder had promised to complete the work within two months, for which she had paid an advance, the complainant said.

She claimed that the builder had received Rs. 11.5 lakh through five cheques. Prabhakar, Singh alleged, did not complete the work. Later, he stopped taking her phone calls and did not reply to her messages on the SMS.

Prabhakar, in its reply, denied having promised to complete the work in two months. He claimed that majority of the work was complete, and only miscellaneous works such as fixing of handles, knobs, glass were to be done.

The commission held that the builder was deficient in rendering services by not completing the works within the stipulated time and leaving some not executing it completely.