The district consumer disputes redressal forum, Chandigarh, has directed a real estate developer to pay Rs 25000 as compensation to a Panchkula resident for delay in refund of booking amount and failing to pay interest on period of delay.
Disposing of complaint filed by Rajiv Goel, a resident of Sector 6, Panchkula, the consumer forum also directed DLF Homes Panchkula Private Limited, to pay 9% interest from July 2013 to February 2014 on the amount deposited by the complainant along with Rs 7,500 as a cost of litigation.
Goel had moved the consumer forum against DLF Homes Panchkula Private Limited and Ananta Singh Raghuvanshi, director, sales and marketing of company.
Goel claimed that he was allotted a property by the DLF Valley, Panchkula, in March 2011, but owing to litigation the project could not take off so he so cancelled the booking and sought refund in July 2013. He claimed that real estate developer refunded the amount to him but did not pay interest for a period of about seven months and no reasons were intimated for the non-payment.
DLF Homes Panchkula Private Limited and Raghuvanshi in reply submitted that the court had stayed the construction from May, 2012, up to December, 2012, pertaining to the said project at DLF Valley, Panchkula. It has been stated that refund was made only as a goodwill gesture to the complainant. They submitted that they were not liable to pay any compensation or interest because the delay was due to the force majeure conditions.
The unimpressed consumer forum presided over by PL Ahuja, on August 19, said: “The developer took matter in a leisurely manner and took a sufficiently long time of about seven months in cancelling the allotment. Since the delay in the refund of the amount was on the part of developer, they should have made the payment of the interest up to February 2014, when the allotment was cancelled and their action to make the payment of 9% interest only up to July 2013 cannot be termed as justified. The denial to pay the interest of 9% per annum for the period from July 2013 to February 2014 is an act of unfair trade practice and deficiency in service.”