IT City’s ‘partial’ truth: GMADA gives itself completion certificate sans completion
Even after 10 months of possession deadline and getting partial completion certificate, GMADA still to hand over possession.punjab Updated: Mar 17, 2018 13:40 IST
Civic work at the IT City project in Mohali is far from complete, yet the Greater Mohali Area Development Authority (GMADA), a state agency, granted itself a completion certificate for a large part of the project a year ago. The apparent reason was to avoid registration with a regulatory authority, and also to paper over project delay that looks set to stretch even further.
The chief engineer of GMADA issued the partial completion certificate (PCC) in April last year for 1,253.7 of the 1,672.7 acres of the project, which is mostly taken up by the 3,229 residential plots that were offered in 2014 and 2016. In the letter of intent (LOI) to allottees in June 2014, the authority promised possession within 36 months, that is, by June 2017.
A visit to the site shows workers of the contractor laying sewerage and water pipes, and electricity wires, and erecting streetlight poles in several blocks of the residential parts. “Such delay isn’t expected from a government agency such as GMADA. The officials don’t even respond to our queries,” said Ashish Malhan, a Delhi resident who is one of the allottees.
Sunil Kansal, chief engineer, GMADA, refused to comment on the issue, stating he didn’t have all pertinent records with him as he was “out of station”.
Some allottees are planning to seek refund. “Looking at the pending work on site, it seems the possession is still 5-6 months away. We will apply for refund,” said Amarinder Singh of Nangal.
It must also be noted that GMADA received the PCC for IT City on April 28 last year, while the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act became operational three days later, on May 1. Under the act, it is mandatory for the registration of all ongoing projects with the state’s Real Estate Regulatory Authority (Rera), but GMADA has now applied for registration only for about a fourth of the project that’s not covered by the ”partial” certification.
“GMADA is trying to wriggle out of the purview of stringent provisions of the act. However, Rera still has ample power to investigate such projects and even punish,” said Himanshu Raj, a Chandigarh-based lawyer.
When asked why the certification was done without completion, GMADA estate officer Mahesh Bansal said, “I received official information that development work in residential parts is complete. For more information, you should contact the chief engineer.”
Sunil Kansal, chief engineer, GMADA, refused to comment on the issue, stating he didn’t have all pertinent records with him as he was “out of station”. On Friday, though, GMADA held a draw of lots for allotting house numbers for some units.