The district consumer disputes redressal forum directed Jalandhar Improvement Trust (JIT) to refund a sum of `9.87 lakh to a complainant who paid the money for allotment of a residential plot as the scheme under which the land was allotted has been stalled by the Punjab and Haryana high court.
JIT has also been directed to pay an interest of 9% per annum on the amount which will be calculated from January 31, 2014, till the payment is made to the complainant.
Complainant Madan Singh (65), a resident of Kapurthala, had filed a complaint in the consumer court on January 31, 2014, against the JIT. The complaint mentioned that he had applied for a plot of around 94.97 acre in Surya Enclave Extension under a development scheme run by the trust.
He was allotted plot number 284-D by JIT on April 2, 2012, after paying Rs 3.4 lakh as advance. Later, he deposited 1/4th of the total price of the plot of around Rs 6.47 lakh on Novemeber 2, 2012, fulfilling the terms and conditions as mentioned in the allotment letter of JIT.
However, after paying the amount, Singh tried more than once to pay the full amount and get possession of the plot but the JIT officials refused to take the money by citing a stay order passed by the Punjab and Haryana high court on the development scheme.
Singh alleged that he decided to demand a refund when, after visiting the site, he found that there was no construction as per the promises made by the JIT.
When the JIT officials were approached, they denied all allegations leveled against them by the complainant and tried to brush off their responsibility by saying that the complainant failed to abide by the terms and conditions of paying the installments on time.
The Punjab and Haryana high court has passed a stay order on the development scheme and the hearing of the case is now fixed for September 29, 2014, JIT officials added.
After considering the arguments presented by both the sides, the district consumer forum observed that the trust could not accept the payment of plot before getting the approval from the state government, but the trust accepted the first installment along with the advance made for allotment of the plot.
The high court said it had passed the stay order and it was unfair to expect the complainant to wait for an indefinite period before the stay is lifted. Hence, it directed the JIT to refund the money of the complainant along with interest and compensation.