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Flat buyers’ life changed forever

india Updated: Feb 20, 2012 01:24 IST

They staged demonstrations, took out protest rallies, argued with officials and filed RTI applications. And, while doing all this, they have been gradually losing hope.

Nine months after the affordable housing dreams in Noida Extension received the first setback, life for thousands of homebuyers has changed forever.

Shweta Bharti (40) is an IT professional. She lives in a rented flat in Delhi’s Janakpuri and works there. “It’s a multi-pronged battle. We are paying monthly rents.

EMIs are draining us. After five months of battle, a judgment in October raised hopes, but construction has not started yet,” she said.

Devendra Kumar (35), another IT professional, said, “I stay and work in Mayur Vihar. But much of my time is consumed in pursuit of my house. We have formed a group with our office in Noida sector 5. We know this fight is taking a toll on our personal and professional life.”

For an average house cost of Rs 20 lakh, a buyer has deposited 10% — Rs 2 lakh. He was supposed to deposit 10% more at a later stage. His bank has financed 40% (R8 lakh). Forty per cent more was to be financed later. The monthly EMI is between Rs 10,000 and Rs 15,000. An equally big amount goes in rentals per month.

Abhishek Kumar, president of a buyers’ association, said, “Going by the builders’ promises, buyers should have got the possession by now. Without rentals, we could have managed EMIs. But everything looks so uncertain now. No bank has offered us any relief.”

A larger bench of the HC raised hopes of a realty revival in October last year when it ruled that land would remain with builders and farmers would get increased benefits. But there was a catch. The court also said construction would not begin till land use changes made to Greater Noida’s master plan to create a Noida Extension housing hub were cleared by the NCR planning board in Delhi. Four months have gone by but the approval has not come.

Fresh Trouble

Meanwhile, builders have stopped giving money to the authority (to be distributed among farmers) and the authority is not giving plots of developed land to farmers as it cannot undertake development activity. Farmers have moved the Supreme Court, seeking their land back.