Shahberi Aftermath: Authorities In Noida Up Ante Against Errant Builders
Authorities in Noida have already upped the ante against builders, responsible for causing real estate mischief in once the poster boy of affordable realty, Noida property market. It is known for entirely different reasons today. The Shahberi building collapse tragedy of July 17 that took nine lives and affected scores of other lives has triggered a reaction from authorities which buyers only wished for while offenders escaped so far, somehow.
In several firsts, authorities have started booking realtors for duping homebuyers, not meeting project delivery deadlines and not paying land dues.
After the shrill wake-up that involved loss of several lives, the Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority on July 29 registered cases against 74 builders for allegedly constructing 58 illegal buildings in the village. Authorities say the builders have been constructing on government notified land without any permit.
Four days later, the Noida Police booked AVJ Height Builders under the UP Gangsters and Anti-Social Activities (Prevention) Act, 1986, for duping homebuyer and selling a property to multiple people. The builder is also accused of giving possession of units without having obtained occupancy certificates and without executing registry. This was the first time the police booked a builder under the stringent Gangsters Act.
"They have been accused of duping people by illegally selling the same flat to different people. They have also been accused of getting loans for the same flat under different names from banks," the police said in an official statement.
On August 5, the city police arrested the vice-president of Earth Iconic Infrastructure on chargers of duping buyers. In a complaint filed against the builder, it is alleged that not only did the relator refuse to give refund to a buyer but also resorted to threatening.
"Those duping innocent buyers will not be spared. The builders who have cases against them or are absconding will be held and action taken against them," Senior Superintendent of Police Ajay Pal Sharma said after the arrest.
Continuing the drive, the Noida Authority on August 6 directed the district administration to auction personal assets of realtor Shubhkamna Buildtech over its failure to pay land dues to the tune of over Rs 78 crore. This is the first such instance where the Noida Authority has asked the district administration to auction assets of the builder to recover dues. Not only has the builder failed to pay the authority, it has failed to deliver its promises to buyers, too. The builder has only completed building the structure of a project it was expected to deliver by 2013. Previous notices sent to the builder, say authorities, remained unanswered.