Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, October 13
A local court has issued notices to Gupta Builders and Promoters Private Limited (GBP) and its directors Satish Kumar Gupta, Pradeep Kumar Gupta and Raman Kumar Gupta on a criminal complaint filed by the Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA), Punjab. The notices have been issued for November 22, 2021.
The RERA has filed the criminal complaint under Section 80 read with 59 (1) and (2) of the RERA Act for continue violation of Section 3 of Act.
This is the first-ever complaint filed by the RERA Punjab against any builder for the violation of Section 3 of the RERA Act - 2016.
In the complaint filed through advocate Siddharth Pandit, the Punjab RERA alleged that the group violated the Act repeatedly despite a penalty imposed on the builder. As per the complaint, the RERA imposed a penalty of Rs1.50 crore on the builder in May 2019 for launching residential projects in New Chandigarh Smart City/GBP Smart City at Togan village, Mohali, without necessary RERA approval.
This was the highest-ever penalty imposed by the RERA on any developer for the violation of statutory provisions.
Pandit told the court that Section 3 of the Act makes it mandatory for promoters a prior registration of real estate project with the Real Estate Regulatory Authority and imposes a bar upon promoters to advertise, market, book, sell or offer for sale, or invite persons to purchase in any manner any plot, apartment or building.
Pandit said when it came to the notice of the authority that the builder was violating the RERA provisions, a detailed inquiry was conducted. It was found that the project was launched without registration with the RERA and a penalty of Rs1.50 crore was imposed on the builder on May 6, 2019. Later, the builder paid only Rs40 lakh. It did not deposit the remaining amount till date.
In the complaint, the authority said despite being penalised, the group continued to sell units to the investors. With the complaint, the RERA has also attached some of the agreements executed after the penalty with the buyers.
Pandit argued that this is the continuous violation of Section 3 of the RERA Act.
He said: “If any promoter does not comply with the orders, decisions or directions issued under sub-section (1) or continues to violate the provisions of Section 3, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend up to three years or with fine which may extend up to a further 10 per cent of the estimated cost of the real estate project, or with both”.
Pandit prayed the court that in view of this, the directors might be summoned, prosecuted and punished in accordance with provisions under Section 80 read with Sections 59(1), 59(2) for violation of Section 3 of the Real Estate (Regulations and Development) Act, 2016. The group is already in the thick of controversy after the project is left in midway and the investors are filing cases every day in courts and before the police”.
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