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Chandigarh

Posted at: Oct 12, 2018, 2:49 AM; last updated: Oct 12, 2018, 2:00 PM (IST)

Chandigarh builder fails to deliver flat to 77-year-old NRI, fined

Chandigarh builder fails to deliver flat to 77-year-old NRI, fined
File photo

Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, October 11

For having failed to deliver the possession of a flat in stipulated time, the State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission has told a builder to pay a 77-year-old NRI over Rs 40 lakh. 

The case was filed by Sukhmandar Singh, an NRI from the US, against M/s Ansal Properties and Infrastructure Limited, Chandigarh.

Sukhmandar had paid Rs 38.15 lakh towards a flat in Victoria Floors, Golf Links-II, Sector 116, Mohali, a project launched by the builder. However, its possession was not delivered by the committed date of August 8, 2014. The complainant had purchased the flat as he wanted to return to India after retirement from his job in the US. By not getting possession of the flat, Sukhmandar was caused mental agony, harassment and also financial loss, as he could not shift his household furniture and other items, which was to be brought from his native village in India. He was forced to sell the same. 

As per his counsel Nikita Garg, even by August 2016, the opposite party had been giving bald assurances of delivering possession shortly. 

Visits made to the project site revealed that the construction was stopped. A request for refund was declined. Sukhmandar thus approached the commission. 

In its reply, the firm stated that the flat was bought for future gains and thus, Sukhmandar was not a ‘consumer’. However, the argument was dismissed by the commission. It was also averred that the builder had applied for completion certificate in respect of the project, which was pending before the competent authority. Thus, delay, if any, was on the part of the said authorities and not the builder.

The commission directed the builder to refund Rs 38.15 lakh to the complainant and pay a compensation of Rs 2 lakh for causing mental agony and physical harassment to the complainant, as also escalation in prices. It was also directed to pay the litigation costs of Rs 50,000.

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