Consumer forum: Chandigarh realty firm penalised for failing to hand over plot
The construction company and its three directors were directed to refund ₹7.55 lakh and ₹50,000 in compensation to three Chandigarh residentsUpdated: May 21, 2020 23:12 IST
For failing to give possession of a plot to its owner, BCL Homes Limited, Dariya, Chandigarh, and three directors were directed by the district consumer disputes redressal forum to refund ₹7.55 lakh and pay total ₹50,000 in compensation to three city residents.
Om Parkash Mittal and his wife Santosh Kumari from Sector 49-A and Satinder Garg from Sector 32-D had filed a case against the company and its directors, saying they had booked two plots of 200 sq yards each and paid the company a registration fee of ₹2.60 lakh each in May 2011.
According to their complaint, at the time of payment, BCL Homes issued them letters stating that if later, they did not wish to take the plot due to any reason, they would be refunded ₹14,500 per sq yard. Also if they wished to cancel registration any time before the project launch, they would be refunded the registration amount with an additional interest of 24% per annum. However, the company never launched the project and never got in touch after receiving the amount.
In October 2014, the company not only refused to allot the booked plot, but allotted a 1-BR flat in Chinar Homes, Zirakpur. The amount already paid by the three customers was adjusted against the payment of an installment of a re-allotted flat, and furthermore, the company demanded two more installments. So the three complainants paid a total of ₹7.55 lakh.
Thereupon, the three moved the district consumer court stating that their hard earned money was grabbed on false promises and misrepresentations.
In their reply, the company and its two directors responded, saying, “The possession of the fully developed project could not be offered on account of unforeseeable circumstances beyond their control that prevented them from fulfilling a contract.”
The company also said that the complainants never approached them, as claimed in the complaint, adding that as per terms and conditions of the re-allotment, no claim of refund of the amount was to be made by the complainant.
The forum observed: “We see no reason why the interest earned by opposite parties on the amount of ₹7,55,000 not be passed over to complainants. Why should it become additional profit for the opposite parties?”
It directed the company and its three directors to refund ₹7.55 lakh along with interest at 9% per annum from the respective dates of deposit, till its realisation. They were also told to pay ₹50,000 in compensation for “deficiency in service” and for causing mental and physical harassment”, as well as ₹10,000 in litigation costs.