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Gurugram: After DTCP’s nod construction of Apex Our Homes to start in June

Gurugram: After DTCP’s nod construction of Apex Our Homes to start in June

May 15, 2019 in Apex buildtech

GURUGRAM: In a big relief to over 1,100 homebuyers, the department of town and country planning (DTCP) has approved the renewal of the project licence of Apex Our Homes in Sector 37C. The move will allow the developer— Apex Buildtech — to restart construction work, and the delivery of flats is expected from next month. Delayed by about three years, the society, which comes under the state government’s affordable housing project, has 1,136 units in 26 towers and is 90% complete. The DTCP had issued a licence for the 10-acre project in 2012, but it expired last year as the project wasn’t registered under H-Rera. Banks soon stopped funding for the project, and work has been stalled for the past few months as a result. TOI had on February 9 reported about the delay in the completion of the project and had highlighted the agony of the homebuyers, who have been shuttling between various government agencies, including H-Rera and DTCP, requesting their intervention for early completion of the project. While renewing the licence last week, DTCP set two conditions for the developer to fulfil, which included the construction of community sites as per the Huda Act, 1975, and deposit of bank guarantee and external development charges within 15 days. District town planner (planning) RS Batth said the department renewed the licence of the project till December 2019 under the given terms and conditions and keeping in view the grievances of homebuyers. “The decision will ensure that aggrieved homebuyers get the possession of their flats at the earliest. Some buyers had met DTCP director KM Pandurang and shared their concerns, after which he took the decision to renew the developer’s licence,” Batth said. Apex representative Surinder Singh said the project would soon be registered under H-Rera. He added, “The possession for 432 flats in 10 towers will begin within a month. The remaining 704 flats in 16 towers will be delivered in the next four months.” Homebuyers welcomed the move. “It is great news for us. We hope that the remaining work will be completed soon and flats will be delivered this year. We met the developer and DTCP officials in at least three meetings, after which the department took decision in buyers’ favour,” a homebuyer said. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

Now, owners may have to pay different GST for identical flats

Now, owners may have to pay different GST for identical flats

May 9, 2019 in GST

NEW DELHI: The taxman has asked builders to choose before May 10 the new goods & services tax (GST) rate for ongoing realty projects. The concessional rate, which came into effect April 1, was set at 1% for affordable houses and 5% for others, from the earlier 8% and 12%, respectively. Developers of under-construction projects could opt for the new or previous rate, but now they have been asked to exercise this option before Friday in the prescribed format. This means, two people buying identical flats in the same apartment complex but in different buildings or towers, could technically end up paying different GST rates. If the developer does not choose the rates before May 10, then the new GST rates will kick in automatically, the Central Board of Indirect Taxes and Customs said. The rules of the concessional scheme, including transitional ones, will apply, it said. In the case of projects that begin on or after April 1, no such option is available, and these residential apartments will compulsorily have to pay the new 1% and 5% rates. “Developers need to carefully evaluate as to which scheme is more efficient and clearly communicate to the customers accordingly,” said Siddharth Mehta, partner, indirect tax, PwC. The builder, not the buyer, gets to choose the new rate regime. In effect, the tax component of buyers could vary from building to building even if they opt for flats in the same apartment complex, experts say. “Buyers would now face situations where buildings under construction in the same complex could be subjected to differing rates of GST as builders could exercise the option of availing input tax credits on some buildings and foregoing the credits on others,” said M S Mani, partner, Deloitte India. If flats are booked before April 1but cancelled, the tax paid can be adjusted against any other GST liability, including the 1% or 5% rates outgo. However, if the cancelled flats are resold after April 1, the credit availed earlier on procurements will be reversed. In projects where one building is registered under RERA but construction, booking and occupancy of buildings vary then the rate will be determined for the project as a whole, Deduction of land would be onethird and not on the actual land value, the CBIC said. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

Homebuyers in SC to stay process of Jaypee Infratech’s dissolution

Homebuyers in SC to stay process of Jaypee Infratech’s dissolution

May 8, 2019 in Jaiprakash Associates

NEW DELHI: Fearing liquidation proceedings as the insolvency resolution process for debt-ridden real estate giant Jaypee Infratech Ltd (JIL) could not be completed within the statutory lime period of 270 days, hundred of homebuyers approached the Supreme Court seeking to stop the dissolution process. The apex court had in August last year ordered commencement of insolvency proceedings afresh against JIL before the National Company Law Tribunal, Allahabad, and asked the interim resolution professional (IRP) to seek fresh bids from other companies to take over the realtor. Under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Act, corporate insolvency resolution process must be completed within 270 days and in case of failure, liquidation starts. As the time limit of 270 days ended on May 6, the homebuyers rushed to SC through advocate Ashwarya Sinha to stay the liquidation process. Though the NCLT in Allahabad has posted the matter for May 21, providing some breathing space to investors and likely bidders, the uncertainty has forced homebuyers to move the Supreme Court seeking protection of their interests. "If no resolution plan is accepted till May 6 (the date has now passed), JIL will automatically go into liquidation, thereby leaving thousands of homebuyers in the lurch. Liquidation of the company will only be in the interest of banks who will be able to recover the money lent by them to the debtor," the petition said. It said liquidation would defeat the purpose of safeguarding the interest of 32,000 homebuyers who had paid around Rs 14,000 crore to JIL. "The provisions stipulate that in case of distribution of the proceeds, secured creditors will be given preference over an unsecured creditor. However, since no amendments have been brought forth in the definition of secured creditors to include homebuyers, they continue to be regarded as unsecured creditors," it said. Meanwhile, one of the creditor banks IDBI moved an application before NCLT, Allahabad, for extension of time to allow insolvency proceedings to go on that has resulted in the case being scheduled for May 21. Citing Amrapali and Unitech cases, in which forensic auditing of the companies was ordered, homebuyers pleaded for a similar order against Jaypee to track diversion of funds which sparked financial issues. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

Unitech clients without home or refund write to ministry of corporate affairs

Unitech clients without home or refund write to ministry of corporate affairs

May 7, 2019 in Unitech Group

NEW DELHI: Homebuyers who have not received delivery of homes or refunds of their payments from the Unitech Group have written to the ministry of corporate affairs seeking the removal of promoter directors from the company’s board for violations of provisions of the Companies Act. The homebuyers have already filed a motion in Supreme Court for replacement of the Unitech board with government nominees. The realtor has failed to hand over more than 14,000 flats to homebuyers after taking deposits of about Rs 6,700 crore, according to a report filed by an amicus curae in Supreme Court. The letter reviewed by ET stated that fixed deposits that fell due in March 2015 had not been paid even after an extension of 12 months granted by the bankruptcy appellate tribunal. The letter stated that this meant that Unitech founder and chairman Ramesh Chandra and managing directors Ajay and Sanjay Chandra had ceased to be directors under the Companies Act, although they continue to be reflected as directors on the website of the Registrar of Companies. “All these defaulting directors are in jail and it is in the interest of the public that this point is taken note of by the Registrar of Companies and their names should be struck off from the list of directors” the homebuyers said in the letter. They stated that the failure of Unitech to call an annual general meeting since 2017-18 is also against the Companies Act. “A new management appointed by the Centre will be in a much better position to find a solution to the crisis, either by finding an investor or by selling under-construction projects or by appointment of NBCC in viable projects,” said a homebuyer who spoke to ET on condition of anonymity. The Unitech Group did not respond to emailed requests for comment. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

Gurugram: HSVP’s estate officer among five booked for irregularity in allotment of plot

Gurugram: HSVP’s estate officer among five booked for irregularity in allotment of plot

May 6, 2019 in Haryana Government

GURUGRAM: The estate officer of Haryana Shahari Vikas Pradhikaran (HSVP) and four others have been booked for alleged irregularities in allotment and transfer of a commercial plot auctioned in 2008. The urban development authority officials are accused of changing the details of the plot holder. The case was filed upon the complaint of Sahil Hans, a resident of Naraina Vihar in New Delhi. In February 2008, HSVP had auctioned a two- storey shop (DSS) in Sector 9, and Sahil was allotted the property for Rs 1.06 crore. He deposited Rs 26 lakh as initial earnest amount, while the remaining amount had to be paid on half-yearly basis. After the allotment, Sahil was approached by Shiv Prakash Aggarwal and his son Rishi —claiming to be financer and investor —who wanted to purchase the DSS. “I explained to them that I only had the documents related to the allotment as the full payment was yet to be made. The duo convinced me saying that they would get the allotment transferred in their name as they have very good liaisons with HSVP officials,” alleged Sahil. They also assured Sahil that the balance amount that had to be paid to HSVP, will be paid by them. After few meetings, Sahil agreed to sell the said property for Rs 26 lakh. The payments were made through cheques from the bank account of Pushpa Agarwal, sister of Shiv Prakash. In 2011, Sahil received a call from Ghaziabad police informing him that about a complaint was filed against him by Pushpa Agarwal alleging that Sahil received the money from them but did not transfer the plot. “HSVP officials informed that the plot was still on my name (till that time) but the address was changed to Shiv Prakash’s,” Sahil said. He added that all this while all the notices sent by HSVP was going to Shiv Prakash’s address while the department was holding him accountable for the same. Sahil filed a complaint with the economic offence wing of Gurgaon police but action was only taken after he approached the chief minister. An FIR has been registered at Sector 9 police station against the five accused under relevant sections 403 (misappropriation of property), 405 (Criminal breach of trust), 416 (cheating by personation), 420 (cheating), 467 (forging a document), 468 (forgery), 34 (common intention) and 120B (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

Gurugram: Builder may be asked to pay Rs 1.5 crore for chopping 2,000 trees

Gurugram: Builder may be asked to pay Rs 1.5 crore for chopping 2,000 trees

May 5, 2019 in Real Estate News

GURUGRAM: A real estate developer may be asked to pay Rs 1.5 crore as penalty for chopping off 2,200 trees in Choma village near Palam Vihar in 2017. After the National Green Tribunal (NGT) directed the forest department to analyse the damage due to the felling of trees, it prepared a report. “The district forest department has submitted the report with the recommendation on the penalty. However, the head office will send it to the NGT and then a final decision will be taken,” said a source, requesting anonymity. The report has been sent to Chandigarh and it would now be sent to senior officials at the NGT. In 2017, the developer had axed 2,200 trees in Choma, although, the forest department had permitted cutting of only 20 trees. The trees were felled in the first week of February in 2017 and an FIR was lodged against the developer and some forest officials in March 2017. The builder was allegedly helped by a forest guard, a forester and a range forest officer. Later, two forest guards were suspended and a probe was conducted by the forest department. Many forest department officials had also complained about the incident alleging negligence. But no action was taken. In March this year, the NGT directed the forest department to analyse the damage and recommend the penalty amount. It asked the forest department to submit a report within two years. Activists, however, feel that imposing a penalty is not enough. “The department needs to understand that the amount is very small for the real estate developer. It is definitely not enough. Strict action should be taken against any employee and officer found responsible for tree cutting at that time. I think the builder should also be given the responsibility to plant trees and take care of those for a few years,” said Vivek Kamboj, an environmentalist. Kamboj had filed a complaint with the forest department and the state environment ministry when the trees were felled. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

Gurugram: Clear EDC to get papers for properties built on farmland

Gurugram: Clear EDC to get papers for properties built on farmland

May 4, 2019 in Real Estate News

GURUGRAM: The Gurugram Metropolitan Development Authority(GMDA) will now charge 40% of external development charges (EDC) at the time of approving the building plan, and 50% before issuing occupation certificates (OCs) for all properties which earlier came under agricultural zone but are now part of the ‘urbanisable’ zone after change of land use (CLU). A notice in this regard was passed on Wednesday. The order became necessary after changes were made in the Gurgaon-Manesar Urban Complex plan, and will mostly cover areas in new sectors and Manesar. “After changes in the development plan, it has become imperative that recovery of full EDC is made in cases where CLU is involved. While the money recovered might not be very high, it will still aid development,” said a senior GMDA official. He added the authority had proposed to the government that 100% recovery be made before issuance of OCs in all cases involving CLU. But four months since they sent their proposal, the government is yet to take a decision. “Hence we decided to charge EDC in a staggered manner so that OC applications aren’t kept pending. The staggered payments, however, will be applicable only till the government takes a decision in the matter,” said the official. A copy of the notice accessed by TOI stated EDC receipts by government are well short of expenditures made under this head, as far as the Gurgaon-Manesar Urban Complex is concerned. And the significant deficit in the EDC receipts is impeding fulfilment of development obligations in the city. GMDA will be in a serious financial crunch if it fails to recover the funds under EDC charges soon from the state government. One of the authority’s major revenue sources is EDC, but in the last two years, it has not received any funds from DTCP, which has reflected poorly on GMDA’s books. The issue was raised in GMDA’s budget meeting in April, in the presence of chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar, where DTCP assured GMDA it will release EDC funds soon enough. GMDA has also allocated around Rs 534 crore of development works to be funded from EDC charges. Beyond EDC, GMDA also plans to start levying stamp duty charges and excise charges. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

Gurugram: NCDRC directs Ramprastha City’s builder to refund home buyers’ money

Gurugram: NCDRC directs Ramprastha City’s builder to refund home buyers’ money

May 3, 2019 in Real Estate News

GURUGRAM: The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) on Wednesday directed builder Ramprastha to refund the entire amount paid by seven homebuyers along with 12% interest. The buyers had paid Rs 70-80 lakh for flats in SKYZ project, a part of Ramprastha City in Sector 37D, around eight years ago. Now, along with the interest they are expected to get around Rs 1.2 crore each from the developer, who has been given four weeks to refund the amount. Ramprastha City welfare association on behalf of seven buyers had earlier approached the commission against the developer seeking refund as completion of the project was delayed for several years. Ramprastha launched the mega project spread over 450 acres in Sector 37D along Dwarka Expressway in 2008-09. It has around 6,000 flats in six different projects. Three of the projects were supposed to be ready by 2012, one project by 2014 and the two other projects were supposed to be ready by 2015. Most projects, however, are incomplete. “As per the construction-linked plan, the builder takes around 90% of the payment from buyers by 2013. By that time, around 60% of the work was done. And the status is more or less the same till date,” said Pradip Rahi, a resident of Ramprastha City and president of the welfare association. With no hope of getting their flats in near future, buyers formed an association in 2013 and started meeting government authorities seeking their intervention to expedite the project’s completion. “The association on behalf of around 400 buyers approached the commission in 2015, but for two years there had been no progress in the case, and some of the buyers started getting impatient,” Rahi said, adding that seven buyers came forward seeking refund from the developer in 2017. A separate case was filed in 2017 in NCDRC on behalf of seven buyers of SKYZ project, and for two years the developer kept on delaying the case on some or other pretext. “Some of the buyers had approached Haryana Real Estate Regulatory Authority (HRera). The developer cited this to delay the court proceedings,” said Rahi. After two years of wait, finally NCDRC on Wednesday passed an order in favour of the seven buyers. “We demanded 15% interest, but it was settled for 12% simple interest. We agreed to it,” said Rahi. “This is good news for us as we won the case with 12% interest. I’m happy for our seven members who believed in people’s power and joined the association to fight the case. Other case filed by us is listed for final hearing in May. We expect justice from the court,” he said. Sushil Kaushik, the counsel for buyers, said, “Justice can be delayed but can’t be denied. I was facing a tough time to explain buyers as the judgment was getting delayed since 2015. But this win will regain trust of buyers to fight against injustice.” A representative of Ramprastha said the commission passed the order on Wednesday, and the builder had not received the certified copy so far. “We will study the order and take an appropriate step,” he said. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

Amrapali Group committed first degree crime by cheating home buyers: SC

Amrapali Group committed first degree crime by cheating home buyers: SC

May 2, 2019 in Amrapali News

Amrapali Group has committed a "first degree crime" by cheating thousands of home buyers and no matter how powerful the people behind this mess they will be booked and prosecuted, the Supreme Court said Tuesday. "Fate is written on the wall" for the group and its directors, the top court said while declining to hear their claims of no wrong doing. The embattled real estate firm "cheated everybody including home buyers, banks and authorities and indulged in cartelization to prevent the Debt Recovery Tribunal from auctioning its unencumbered properties", it said. "The limit of your fraud touched the sky." A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and U U Lalit said it cannot believe the justification given by Amrapali for alleged diversion of funds of over Rs 3,500 crore, looking at its dubious conduct. "You have committed a first degree crime by cheating thousands of home buyers. We should have cancelled the licences of statutory auditors of Amrapali for indulging in fraudulent practise long back and sent them to jail. "We are saying in open court that there are powerful people behind this mess but no matter how powerful they are, we will book them and prosecute them. We are not going to spare anybody," the bench said. The hard hitting remarks of the bench came after senior advocates Geeta Luthra and Gaurav Bhatia, appearing for the group, said there was no wrong doing done on their part and there was no diversion of Rs 3,500 crore as claimed by the court appointed forensic auditors. Luthra said forensic auditors have erred on various aspects in their report like they had claimed that not a single penny was invested by directors of Amrapali but in reality Rs 60 to Rs 70 crore was put in by them. "We have to believe the forensic auditors and their report looking at your dubious conduct. We believe them. You (Amrapali) have yourself admitted in your earlier affidavit that Rs 2,990 crore of home buyers money was diverted and now you are claiming that there was no diversion. You have made a peon as your director and he purchases shares worth crores of rupees for Amrapali. Is this not correct," the bench said. Luthra said the group acted in a bona fide manner and in the interest of home buyers but the problems started after the company ran into litigation. Amrapali Group claimed that they had received Rs 11,057 crore from the home buyers and they have constructed five projects in Indirapuram of Delhi-NCR and gave their possession to home buyers. "Your (Amrapali Group and its directors) fate is written on the wall. We are not inclined to hear your bona fide claims looking at your dubious conduct," the bench said. At the outset, the bench also pulled up Bank of Baroda and other lenders, who have given hefty loans to Amrapali Group for failing to monitor and control the diversion and usage of funds by the reality firms. The day long hearing remained inconclusive and would continue tomorrow. Two forensic auditors -- Pawan Agrawal and Ravi Bhatia -- in their fresh report said yesterday that Amrapali has diverted over Rs 3,500 crore of home buyers money to different projects. The top court had allowed the I-T department and the EOW to access the report of forensic auditors in their probe but restrained them from summoning them. Forensic auditors in their fresh supplementary report pointed out that promoters of Amrapali did not invest a single penny in real estate firm and home buyers money was used for the construction of high rise buildings. They pointed out that there were irregularities in the sale of Amrapali's hotels in Bareilly of Uttar Pradesh and Deoghar of Jharkhand. Agrawal had pointed out that funds over Rs 400 crore were diverted through three companies Bihariji Highrise Pvt Ltd, Jotindra Steel and Tubes Ltd and Mauria Udyog Ltd. On February 28, the apex court had allowed the Delhi police to arrest Amrapali group CMD Anil Sharma and two directors on a complaint that home-buyers of their various housing projects were cheated and duped of their funds. The top court, which is seized of several pleas of home-buyers seeking possession of around 42,000 flats booked in projects of the Amrapali group, also ordered attachment of personal properties of the CMD and directors -- Shiv Priya and Ajay Kumar. The trio, under the detention of Uttar Pradesh police and kept in a hotel at Noida since October 9 last year by the apex court for not complying with its orders, was in for a shock when the court ordered the arrest on a plea by Economic Offence Wing (EOW) of Delhi Police saying that it wanted to quiz them in a separate cheating case. The court had also appointed a valuer to ascertain the exact value of 5,229 unsold flats including those booked by Amrapali for just Rs 1, Rs 11 and Rs 12 and asked the valuer to submit its report. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

SC allows I-T, EOW to access forensic report on Amrapali Group

SC allows I-T, EOW to access forensic report on Amrapali Group

May 1, 2019 in Amrapali News

NEW DELHI: The embattled Amrapali group has diverted over Rs 3,500 crore of home buyers money to different projects, the forensic auditors Tuesday told the Supreme Court which allowed the I-T department and the EOW to access their fresh report. A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and U U Lalit was told by two forensic auditors -- Pawan Agrawal and Ravi Bhatia -- that they have received notices from I-T department and the Economic Offence Wing seeking the audit report as also their presence to explain the same. The top court, which accepted the report, allowed the forensic auditors to share a copy with the investigating agencies. "It is brought to our notice that Commissioner of Police, Economic Offences Wing requires Report of the Forensic Auditors. We permit the Forensic Auditors to furnish the Report to the Economic Offences Wing but they shall not be summoned for any purpose whatsoever to aid in the investigation," the bench said. The top court said that the case has to see the "light of the day" and directed the Amrapali Group to file its reply within a day or two to the reports submitted by forensic auditors. Agrawal pointed to a recent order passed by Debt Recovery Tribunal (DRT), which has been asked by the court to auction the attached and unencumbered properties of Amrapali Group -- in which some adverse remarks were made against the court appointed auditors. "DRT has passed an order day before yesterday seeking our presence and said that we (Agrawal and Bhatia) were hampering the progress of the case," he told the bench which said that it will clarify the order of DRT and would exempt them from appearing before the tribunal. "The DRT is requested not to assume that Forensic Auditors are hampering the auction proceedings. They are rather assisting this Court in the entire process and we appreciate the able assistance rendered by them," the bench said in its order. Forensic auditors in their fresh supplementary report pointed out that till now they have detected that over Rs 3,500 crore of home buyers money was diverted by Amrapali Group through different companies to other projects. They said that promoters of Amrapali did not invested a single penny in real estate firm and home buyers money was used for the construction of high rise buildings. They pointed out that there were irregularities in the sale of Amrapali's hotel in Bareilly of Uttar Pradesh while in actuality the property was not sold. Agrawal also pointed out that funds over Rs 400 crore were diverted through three companies Bihariji Highrise Pvt Ltd, Jotindra Steel and Tubes Ltd and Mauria Udyog Ltd. "Surekha family, which owned Jotindra Steel and Mauria Udyog were running the show of Amrapali after 2015 and were also involved in diversion of home buyers money. Surekha family members were authorised signatory for Amrapali and were also directors in each of the group companies," the auditors said. The bench, then asked the counsel appearing for Jotindra Steel and Tubes Ltd, and Mauria Udyog Ltd to file affidavit on behalf of Akhil Sureka, Managing Director, M/s. Jotindra Steel and Tubes Ltd., and Navneet Sureka, Managing Director of M/s. Mauria Udyog Ltd by tomorrow. The auditors further pointed out that irregularities were also detected in the sale of a hotel owned by Amrapali in Deoghar in Jharkhand. Agrawal said that property in Deoghar was sold for around Rs 18 crore out of which the buyer cleared Rs 7 crore loan liability of Amrapali and Rs 10.82 crores were paid in the month of June, 2018, when the matter was subjudice in the court. "This payment of Rs 10.82 crore was paid through demand draft in the name of Amrapali. Incidentally, entry of this amount cannot be found in any of the book of accounts of Amrapali ," he said. They said the funds were diverted through bogus bills, advance payments to directors and high ranking officials of the Group and through ghost bookings of flats. The day-long hearing in the matter remained inconclusive and the bench asked the forensic auditor to file a summary compilation of final and supplementary report. On February 28, the apex court had allowed the Delhi police to arrest and interrogate in custody Amrapali group CMD Anil Sharma and two directors on a complaint that home-buyers of their various housing projects were cheated and duped of their funds. The top court, which is seized of several pleas of home-buyers seeking possession of around 42,000 flats booked in projects of the Amrapali group, also ordered attachment of personal properties of the CMD and directors -- Shiv Priya and Ajay Kumar. The trio, under detention of the Uttar Pradesh police and kept in a hotel at Noida since October 9 last year by the apex court for not complying with its orders, was in for a shock when the court ordered the arrest on a plea by Economic Offence Wing (EOW) of Delhi Police saying that it wanted to quiz them in a separate cheating case. The court had also appointed a valuer to ascertain the exact value of 5,229 unsold flats including those booked by Amrapali for just Rs 1, Rs 11 and Rs 12 and asked the valuer to submit its report. Sources: realty.economictimes.indiatimes.com

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