The Delhi high court on Monday asked realtor Supertech to pay Rs 40 lakh by the end of October to a home buyer, who has filed a complaint about the delay in giving possession of a villa in one of the company’s projects in Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Area, adjacent to the national capital.
Justice Amit Bansal said besides Rs 40 lakh, another Rs 17 lakh shall be paid to the home buyer by November end.
The court said this amount of Rs 40 lakh shall be utilised by the man for repayment of the loan.
The court was informed that the total amount due to the home buyer was around Rs 1.79 crore, out of which Rs 50 lakh has been paid to him in pursuance of the court’s September 24 order.
As the principal amount was Rs 1.07 crore, the court asked the realtor to first clear that after which the builder shall place before it the payment plan.
The court had on September 24, stayed an order of the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) sentencing Supertech’s MD Mohit Arora to 3-year imprisonment and issuing an arrest warrant against him for non-compliance with an order in the case by the home buyer.
The high court had directed the realty firm to deposit Rs 50 lakh, out of the outstanding Rs 1.79 crore, in the home buyer’s account within a week to show its bona fide to the court.
On Monday, initially, Supertech’s advocate Vikas Sethi submitted that the company proposes to pay the whole amount with Rs 10 lakh installment every month.
The court, however, said the amount has to be substantial.
Advocates Shailesh Madiyal and Vrinda Kapoor, representing homebuyer Kanwal Batra, said the firm shall pay at least the principal amount in the near future so that he can repay the loan and get some money for his daughter’s marriage.
The court said, “you must be reading newspapers that how difficult it is nowadays in these matters. He (Batra) should be grateful for whatever he is getting now. Rather than seeing the glass half empty, see it as half full. The bottom line is that you get back your money.”
The court listed the matter for further hearing on November 11, when the realtor shall give his payment plan.
The high court was hearing Supertech’s plea challenging the September 20 order by which Arora was given 3-year jail and the arrest warrant was issued against him for non-compliance with NCDRC directions.
The NCDRC case pertained to the home buyer’s complaint about the delay in giving possession of a villa in one of the company’s projects in Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Area, which was allotted for over Rs 1 crore.
Earlier, Supertech’s counsel had argued that the NCDRC order was beyond the provisions of section 27 of the Consumer Protection Act and there was no provision it which casts vicarious liability on the MD to make him liable in criminal or civil matters in case of default by the company.
The plea was opposed by the home buyer’s counsel who had said the company was in repeated default of the NCDRC order and has gone back on its undertaking to the forum.
The high court was earlier informed that the arrest warrant was issued on September 20 by the NCDRC which had on September 13 rejected Supertech’s plea for fixing 12-month instalments for payment of the decretal amount.
In April 2019, the NCDRC had ordered the company to either give possession of the villa within six months, along with compensation and costs or refund the entire amount received by it along with compensation.
On July 20, the MD had assured the NCDRC that the order would be complied with within 60 days.
However, on September 20, NCDRC noted that despite the commitment, the order was yet to be implemented and opined that the company was “evading the implementation of the decree”.
It had thus issued an arrest warrant against the MD and sentenced him to three years imprisonment subject to the implementation of the order within a week.
“In view of non-compliance of the direction and dishonouring his own commitment, we sentence the MD of the Judgement Debtor company, as per powers under Section 27 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986, for three years imprisonment and issue warrants of arrest against the managing director of the Judgment Debtor company. The warrants shall not be executed, if the Judgment Debtor deposits the decretal amount before this Commission within one week,” it had said.