Some good news has finally come for people who have spent their hard-earned money in the hope of owning a house in Noida Extension.
Even as Allahabad high court began daily hearing in all Noida Extension land acquisition cases on Monday, the Confederation of Real Estate Developers' Association of India (CREDAI) has agreed to pay Greater Noida authority Rs 2,250 per sqm more for the land already allotted to builders. They have promised not to pass on the burden to the existing buyers.
Pankaj Bajaj, president of CREDAI-NCR, said, "There's no provision in the allotment agreement (between the authority and builders) which says the rate of allotment can be hiked. But in the interest of buyers, we're ready to absorb the burden."
The Greater Noida authority had said on September 6 that it will increase the price of land allotted to builders, who were told to pay Rs 2,250 per sqm more. The builders in turn had said they would pass on the burden (10% of the house cost) to flat buyers.
"We were not at fault. We bought land from the authority thinking the title was clean. We never knew the land was disputed and its ownership could be challenged. We're trying to make sure the already booked houses don't cost more," Bajaj said.
"There's no absolute agreement among builders but most of us feel the existing buyers should not be burdened more. But the consensus is to recover the burden from new bookings," he said.
The hike will be effected in villages, where the authority is striking deals with farmers, giving them bonus money and high-value plots in return of assurance that the farmers will withdraw their petitions and let builders resume stuck housing projects. The authority needs crores of rupees for such arrangements.
Bajaj said, "We're absolutely confident the crisis in Noida Extension would be resolved."
Courts have quashed forcible land acquisition by the authority in Shahberi and Patwari villages, affecting 26,500 houses. Other Noida Extension villages have also moved court, seeking their land back. In all, about 1 lakh buyers have booked houses in Noida Extension and close to 2.25 lakh houses planned.