The Urban Development ministry has frozen the allotment of flats decided recently by a draw of lots by the Delhi Development Authority till the process was cleared from allegations of fraud and rigging.
“Unless we are fully satisfied that the allotment process was free and fair, physical possession of flats would not be given to even a single successful allottee,” minister of state for Urban Development Ajay Maken told Hindustan Times on Sunday.
The police are investigating complaints that a cartel of property dealers used forged documents to corner a large chunk of the flats reserved for those in the scheduled caste and scheduled tribe categories.
The authority launched the scheme on August 3, 2008 and closed it on September 16. It received 12.64 lakh applications for 5,238 ready-to-move-in flats. These were allotted at a draw of lots on December 16.
Soon after, allegations surfaced of fraud and rigging. The urban ministry has now threatened to cancel the allotments — all of them — if the police found large-scale irregularities. "The police are investigating the case. If investigations unearth large scale irregularities in the allotment process, we will cancel the draw of lots and hold it afresh,” Maken said. If the irregularities are of a minor nature, the ministry will merely cancel the allotment of the tainted flats, and put them up for a fresh draw of lots.
The allegations of fraud pertain mostly to the allotment of 25 per cent of the 5,238 flats reserved for those belonging to scheduled castes and scheduled tribes, war widows and those physically challenged.
The authority and the bank appointed by it to act on its behalf are accused of not scrutinising the application forms adequately.
Senior DDA officials said it was not possible to check each form in such a short time period.
“Scrutinising 12.64 lakh forms in three months is not humanly possible. We only carry out a preliminary scrutiny before the lottery. It’s only before handing over the possession that we carry out a detailed verification of all documents,” said the official who did not want to be named as he was not authorized to speak to the media.
DDA spokesperson Neemo Dhar said, “We have not handed over the possession letter to even a single successful applicant till now. That will be done after a proper verification of all documents like address proof and PAN card.”
She added, “For the successful applicants belonging to the reserved category, we will get their certificates verified from the issuing authority. If any discrepancy is found, we will forfeit the registration money and cancel the allotment.”