Residents of Amrapali Sapphire, whose pressure on cricketer MS Dhoni recently ended with him quitting as brand ambassador of the realty group , are not the only ones suffering due to incomplete housing projects. Around 50,000 homebuyers who booked flats in various realty projects are also facing delayed possession of flats.
These property buyers have been unable to get Occupation Certificate (OC) of their housing units executed because their respective builders have failed to pay land dues to the Noida authority.
An OC is a prerequisite for getting the property registered at UP stamps and registration department, without which a property buyer fails to become legal owner of the flat. Without an OC, the builder can also not offer possession to buyers.
The 50,000 flats whose possession has been delayed have been built by 24 real estate companies, who have failed to deposit around Rs 300 crore in land dues.
“As per rules, the Noida authority cannot issue OC to a realtor for a particular building until land dues are paid. The solution to this is that the builder arranges funds and pays up,” said SC Gaur, chief architect and town planner of the Noida authority.
While the delayed flats may be ready in themselves, facilities like parking space, electricity wires, lifts, clubs, swimming pool and park, etc. are not ready.
“Fed up with the never-ending delay in getting possession, many homebuyers have forcefully shifted into these partially-ready buildings. Our own housing project was to be delivered in 2011, but the builder is yet to complete the pending works even after five years. We are now living in an incomplete, unsafe highrise that does not even have a fire safety NOC (no objection certificate),” said Harjit Singh, resident of a highrise society in Sector 119.
“Before issuing OCs, a team from the authority conducts a detailed investigation of the building to verify whether it has all safety features in place. We check fire safety features, parks, lifts, foundation of building and construction norms methodically before issuing OC so that buyers do not face any issues during their stay,” said Gaur.
Senior lawyer Amit Khemka said that residents living in buildings that doesn’t have an OC, will not be able to get accidental insurance claim in case of fire or any such accident.
According to realtors, the delay in completion of projects is due to court cases. Initially, farmers whose land was acquired and the Noida authority were involved in litigation.
“Later, it was the National Green Tribunal case that delayed projects by three years. Now, buyers too are not paying their dues, delaying the project. Amrapali Sapphire flat buyers alone need to pay us around Rs 200 crore. If they start paying, financial issues will be resolved,” said Shiv Priya, executive director of the Amrapali Group.
Builders fear that if the issue remains unresolved for long, it will impact the realty sector.
“On Monday, we could not organise a meeting of realtors on this issue due to our busy schedule. We will sit together and find a way out because if buyers are unhappy, it will affect the market. All the builders, buyers and the Noida authority need to work this out together,” said Gitambar Anand, CMD of ATS Builders and president of the Confederation of real estate developers association of India (Credai).