RERA A Huge Question Mark for Buyers of Logix Blossom Greens
What is the point of having RERA if there is no execution?
I am an aggrieved buyer of Logix Blossom Greens who, along with a few of active co-buyers from the same project, have compiled feedback from several buyers who have filed a case under RERA (Real Estate Regulation and Development Act). As an aggrieved buyer who has tried her best to find the solution of her problem through all possible means, on Consumer’s Day I want to share my plight and my experience with RERA so far.
Although the RERA looked quite promising initially due to its fast proceedings and judgment, eventually the UP-RERA particularly turned into a big question mark for us buyers. There are several examples to prove its incompetence. A fellow buyer, Sarat Kumar, who is 80-years-old and has put all his savings in the flat, was given a relief of only 2% approximately (Rs 5 per sq ft) for the non-delivery of his flat.
There are few exceptional cases where the judgment has been favourable, having compensation of approximately 18 percent, like in the case of another buyer at Logix Blossom Greens, Amit Saxena.
Irrespective of the judgment, the baseline for all the cases so far remains more or less the same ie the judgment granted are not being executed efficiently by the RERA, despite having all the powers. Buyers are compelled to settle out of court with the builder or are forced to struggle to navigate the way forward (knowing the fact that Appellate Authority still doesn't exist).
My case was among the firsts in the UP-RERA. I have travelled twice to Lucknow for it. Both the times the builder sent a mere representative to make their attendance, with absolutely no argument to defend themselves. Still my judgment got postponed twice with a clear statement coming from the chairman that RERA is not just for buyers, but for builders too, and we need to give them time.
Such lenient attitude and flawed judgments made me evaluate my decision to go RERA, and forced me to withdraw my case there. I realised that having a judgment from RERA (however fair or unfair) would have closed my door to appeal in NCDRC, which is slow but fair in their judgments comparatively.
The confused state of governance in helping such larger group of buyers have clearly been quite disappointing. Lack of judges in the court delays the case. Buyers are in dilemma, they don’t know where to go. The corrupt builders have diverted our hard-earned money to other projects for their benefits, and now have safely pulled off their hands by claiming no funds.
RERA – A Toothless Body
My flat was supposed to be delivered by 2013, but on the RERA website the timeline of completion is 2021. Don't you think it is protecting builders in the name of RERA? RERA was functional in mid 2017, if I count the 18-month promise from even that particular date, it will be end of 2019. Still, RERA is doing nothing about it.
For the delayed projects due to diverted funds, RERA suggests projects be completed by asking more funds from the buyers who are already burdened with dual expenses of rent and EMIs. Instead the builders should be punished strictly under criminal offence and their properties should be confiscated to complete the projects.
What is the point of having RERA if there is no execution? Faster judgment doesn’t really solve the issue, unless it has been executed well. There are many rules in RERA to ensure that the builder is bound to execute as per the judgments, which have been ignored completely considering the comfort of these corrupt builders.
Maintaining escrow accounts for each tower, having a car space, converting green area into open car parking, etc are some of the issues which don’t even exist in the RERA functionalities in practical terms. Getting home itself have become such a far achievable task, that such flaws are clearly been ignored by these authorities. And obviously builders are exploiting the buyers for this reason despite the premium prices they have been charged.
Till date, out of 22 towers at Logix Blossom Greens, only 8 towers have been completed. Fourteen towers are still incomplete, even after 8 years. The project was launched in 2011, and was supposed to be completed within 18 months, which is by 2012.
The only expectation from the UP government now is to make UP-RERA as efficient as Maha-RERA at least. The RERA exists for the ease of buyers, and that's the reason a lawyer is not required to represent a case. Only having facts should be enough to provide fair and uniform judgment. Having a middle bench to resort the issues amicably is a good initiative, but getting a fair judgment and timely completion of the projects should be the main motive of such an authoritative body like the RERA.
The government, too, seems to indirectly support builders while ignoring the buyers interest.
That's why buyers are sought after for more funds. That's why these builders are still bypassing all laws and getting occupation certificates for uninhabitable towers/society. That's why even after delay of 8 years, RERA is giving judgment favourable to builder, with penalty of mere 1 percent, while the buyers are giving loan interest of approximately 10-11%.
Sometimes, I as a buyer, doubt that the formation of RERA is to pull buyers from going to NCDRC, to de-stress the financial loss of the builder from such heavy penalties.
(The author is a buyer of Logix Blossom Greens in Noida. All 'My Report' branded stories are submitted by citizen journalists to The Quint. Though The Quint inquires into the claims/allegations from all parties before publishing, the report and the views expressed above are the citizen journalist's own. The Quint neither endorses, nor is responsible for the same.)
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