Builder told to pay Rs 80L for delay in flat delivery
A city builder will have to shell out Rs 80 lakh for failing to deliver a flat to a purchaser on time, by way of interest at the rate of 8% per annum on the sale consideration paid by him to the builder.
Vilas Gaonkar of Shri Swami Samarth Constructions will also have to pay an additional Rs 25,000 to Prabhadevi resident Jyoti Gala, towards litigation cost.In 2009, Gala had booked an 85.84-sqm flat in Samarth Heights — a project by the builder at Dadar. She had also paid the entire consideration of the flat – Rs 1.25 crore — to the builder by November 2009, on the condition that the builder will hand over the flat in 36 months, after receipt of a commencement certificate.
She approached the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission in 2013, complaining that although the builder received a commencement certificate in October 2010, he failed to complete the construction of the building and deliver the flat in 36 months thereafter. The builder opposed the complaint, stating that it was premature as the commencement certificate issued by the civic body in October 2010 was only for construction up to the plinth level. He claimed that the commencement certificate for construction up to the 10th floor was given on February 9, 2012, and plans for construction above the 10th floor were approved on November 10, 2014, and according to them, the period of 36 months was to start from the grant of the final commencement certificate.
The commission rejected Gaonkar’s contention, saying that as the development control regulations (DCR) did not envisage issuance of multiple commencement certificates, the certificate dated October 27, 2010, would be the one envisaged under the agreement and it was for the builder to complete construction in time and deliver the allotted flat by October 27, 2013.
The commission also noted that the builder had submitted a revised plan after amendment to the DCR to take advantage of the grant of additional floor space index. It said the builder could not have unilaterally modified the plans at the cost of the buyer’s right to receive the allotted flat in time. The commission has directed the builder to complete construction by December 31, 2021 and pay interest at the rate of 8% per annum on Rs 1.25 crore from October 2013.