The apex consumer commission has asked a real estate firm to refund over Rs 49 lakh to a home buyer for delay in handing over possession of a property saying a buyer cannot be expected to wait indefinitely. The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) has asked Unitech Ltd to refund Rs 49,96,220 along with a cost of Rs 10,000 to south Delhi resident Sarwan Kumar after noting that the firm is not in a position to offer the possession. The commission also held the firm guilty of deficient service and unfair trade practice as even after receiving more than 100 per cent of the consideration amount, the firm failed to deliver possession.
“It cannot be disputed that the opposite party (firm) has failed to deliver possession of the apartment even eight years after the expiry of stipulated date. “Thus, in our view, this is a case of the opposite party not being in a position to offer possession of the apartment as the allottee cannot be expected to wait for possession of the apartment for indefinite period,” a bench headed by the commission’s presiding member Ajit Bharihoke said. According to the complaint filed by Kumar, he had booked an apartment on the 15th floor of a group housing development project Unitech Horizon at Alistonia Estate in Greater Noida for which he had paid Rs 49,96,220.
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The complaint alleged that the firm failed to adhere to the timeline for delivery and could not give the possession even after eight years of the stipulated date. While holding the firm guilty, the commission said, “In absence of any explanation for failure to comply with the stipulation of deliver of possession, we have no hesitation in concluding that the opposite party has committed deficiency in service as also has indulged in unfair trade practice.” The firm, however, failed to file the reply and the commission considered the allegations against it as correct.