Consumer Complaint Nos. 553, 471, 554, 611, 629, 657, 658, 661, 677 and 699 of 2016. Case: Roma Sangwan and Ors. Vs DLF Homes Panchkula Pvt. Ltd. and Ors.. Union Territory State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission

Case NumberConsumer Complaint Nos. 553, 471, 554, 611, 629, 657, 658, 661, 677 and 699 of 2016
CounselFor Appellant: Parvinder Singh Bedi, Advocate and For Respondents: Ekta Jhanji and Parveen Jain, Advocates
JudgesJasbir Singh, J. (President), Dev Raj and Padma Pandey, Members
IssueArbitration And Conciliation Act, 1996 - Section 8; Consumer Protection Act, 1986 - Sections 14(1)(d), 17, 2(1)(d)(ii), 2(1)(o), 2(1)(d), 2(1)(o), 3
Judgement DateJanuary 09, 2017
CourtUnion Territory State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission


Dev Raj, Member, (Chandigarh)

  1. By this order, we propose to dispose of the aforesaid 10 consumer complaints bearing Nos. 553/2016, 471/2016, 554/2016, 611/2016, 629/2016, 657/2016, 658/2016, 661/2016, 677/2016 and 699/2016.

  2. At the time of arguments on 20.12.2016, it was agreed between Counsel for the parties, that issues in law and facts involved in the above complaints, by and large, are the same, and therefore, these complaints can be disposed of, by passing one consolidated order.

  3. Under above circumstances, to dictate order, facts are being taken from consumer complaint bearing No. 553 of 2016, titled as 'Smt. Roma Sangwan v. M/s. DLF Homes Panchkula Private Limited'.

  4. In brief, the facts are that the Opposite Party, a limited company developed the project at Village Bhagwanpur, Tehsil & Distt. Kalka, Panchkula, Haryana and advertised the said project through various medias. On 22.03.2010, the original allottee, namely, Sh. Suresh Kumar Mittal booked an independent floor No. DVF-B1/76-GF in the project of the Opposite Party, namely, 'DLF Valley, Panchkula, by depositing an advance amount of Rs. 4 Lacs, against the total sale price of Rs. 42,34,599.72. On 13.08.2010, Sh. Suresh Kumar Mittal appointed and nominated Sh. Randeep Sangwan S/o. Mr. Kalyan Singh Sangwan (son of complainant) as his lawful attorney and executed General Power of Attorney in his favour, which was registered at Sr. No. 701 dated 05.08.2010 (Annexure-E). He was allotted the said flat and subsequently, an Independent Floor Buyer's Agreement was executed between Sh. Suresh Kumar Mittal through his GPA and the Opposite Party on 25.01.2011 (Annexure-J) at Chandigarh. Sh. Suresh Kumar Mittal paid all the first six installments up-to 14.03.2012 including service tax, EDC, IDC and PLC etc. and he was also given advance payment rebates for remitting the timely/advance installments. Sh. Suresh Kumar Mittal/through his GPA also deposited installments as also service tax and, in all, an amount of Rs. 28,67,157.26 was deposited with the Opposite Party up-till 14.03.2012.

  5. Subsequently, the unit, in question, was transferred by Sh. Suresh Kumar Mittal in the name of the complainant on 10.05.2013 vide document at Page 27 of the paper-book (Annexure-J). The complainant thereafter paid 7th, 8th and 9th installments to the Opposite Party and, up-till 31.07.2016, the total amount of Rs. 42,70,557.32 stood paid to the Opposite Party. It was stated that the complainant purchased the unit, in question, to settle her son in the said flat but all her dreams shattered when the Opposite Party failed to give possession of the said unit within the stipulated period. It was further stated that as per the Agreement, possession of the unit, in question, was to be offered by the Opposite Party within a period of 24 months from the date of execution of the Agreement but till the date of filing of the complaint, despite number of visits by the complainant to the office of the Opposite Party, it failed to hand over possession. It was further stated that the Opposite Party was lingering the matter on one pretext or other by stating that the project was under progress. It was further stated that the complainant has suffered immense losses despite having paid for the unit.

  6. Alleging deficiency, in rendering service, and indulgence into unfair trade practice, on the part of the Opposite Party, the complainant filed the instant complaint under Section 17 of the Consumer Protection Act 1986 (in short 1986 Act) seeking directions to the Opposite Party, to hand over the physical possession of unit, in question, immediately; pay interest @ 15% per annum on the deposited amount for the delayed possession; pay compensation of Rs. 15,00,000/- on account of harassment and mental agony suffered by the complainant; pay Rs. 2,00,000/- as cost of proceedings; and grant any other relief which this Commission deems fit and proper under the facts and circumstances of the present case.

  7. The Opposite Party, in its preliminary submissions in the written statement submitted that the complainant is a subsequent purchaser as the unit, in question, was initially allotted to Sh. Suresh Kumar Mittal on 26.03.2010; Floor Buyer's Agreement was executed with him on 25.01.2011 and subsequently, the said unit was transferred in favour of the complainant on 10.05.2013. It was further stated that Occupation Certificate was received on 02.05.2016 (Ann. R/1) and possession would be offered soon. It was further stated that the complainant had the full knowledge about the executed terms of Agreement dated 25.01.2011. It was further stated that at this stage, the complainant was backing out of the executed agreement. It was further stated that 31% cost escalation of the construction as well 47% of the land holding cost, totaling 76% of the sale price of the allotted floor be allowed. It was further stated that the project was cost escalation free as the complainant shall get the possession of the floor on the same price as committed by the Opposite Party at the time of allotment on 26.03.2010. It was further stated that construction of the project got delayed due to stay on construction activity by the High Court and thereafter by Hon'ble Supreme Court of India due to third party litigation involving acquisition proceedings of land of litigants therein, in the years 2010 and 2012.

  8. The Opposite Parties have further stated that occupation certificate(s) of 1479 units had already been received and offer of possession to the allottees has already been started. It was also stated that proper water connection and electricity supply was in place and housekeeping and maintenance services were being provided through leading multinational company namely Jones Lang Lasalle. Further, under the caption "FACTS OF THE COMPLAINT", it was stated that Sh. Suresh Kumar Mittal booked the flat No. DVF-B1/76-GF measuring 1550 sq. ft. through application form for allotment dated 04.02.2010 and paid an amount of Rs. 4 Lacs as earnest money. It was further stated that the original allottee entered into Floor Buyer's Agreement with the Opposite Party on 25.01.2011 and the price of the unit was Rs. 43,12,099.72 plus other taxes as applicable. It was further stated that the unit, in question, was transferred to the complainant vide transfer letter dated 10.05.2013. It was stated that the complainant has deposited a sum of Rs. 38,63,451.89.

  9. In the preliminary objections, it was stated that the parties were bound by the terms and conditions mentioned in the Independent Floor Buyer's Agreement; that the complainant has made baseless allegations of unfair trade practice, deficiency in service etc. with an ulterior motive to amend/modify/rewrite the concluded Agreement duly executed between parties, purely to invoke jurisdiction of this Commission; that this Commission cannot adjudicate upon the matter where the prima facie prayers are for modification of clauses of the Agreement; that the complainant is not consumer as the floor, in question, was booked by her for investment purposes and earning profits. An objection was also raised in the written statement that as per Clause 55 in the Agreement, all disputes arising out of the Agreement are to be settled amicably, failing which, they shall be referred to the Arbitration. It was further stated that the Opposite Party could not be made liable for delay caused due to force majeure condition, which was on account of stay by Hon'ble Punjab & Haryana High Court and Hon'ble Supreme Court of India from 19.04.2012 to 12.12.2012 and delay in grant of approvals in layout plans and service plans. In Sub Para (g) of Para 8, it was further stated that approval regarding revision in layout plan and service plans sought on 11.3.2013 and 20.05.2013, was received on 06.09.2013 and 14.08.2014 respectively.

  10. In some of the connected complaints, it was also stated that when given the option to exit, the complainant(s) agreed to continue with allotment and delay and, as such, the complainant(s) voluntarily waived of his/their right to raise any grievance.

  11. The Opposite Parties also moved miscellaneous applications under Section 8 of Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 for referring the matter to the sole arbitration in complaints No. 471/2016, 611/2016 and 554/2016. [These applications were disposed of by holding that the question qua arbitration would be considered at the time of final arguments in the main case].

  12. On merits, it was denied that the total price of the unit was Rs. 42,34,599.72. It was stated that in-fact the total price of the unit as per SOP was Rs. 43,12,099.72. It was further stated that GPA dated 25.04.2013 was executed between the original allottee Suresh Kumar Mittal and Mr. Randeep Sangwan. It was further stated that the complainant having purchased the property in 2013 itself knew well in advance that the above project has been delayed. It was further stated that all the demands under the head of other charges, are strictly in terms of Clause 1.11 of the Agreement. It was further stated that charging of EDC is purely a transparent transaction between the Opposite Party and the State Government and the same is levied as per the notifications issued by the competent authority (Annexure R/16). It was further stated that all the demands have been raised by the Opposite Party in terms of the Floor Buyer's Agreement and the customer was given an early payment rebate of Rs. 4,08,106.89. It was stated that the complainant's husband had already been allotted an independent Floor No. B-1/10-FF in the said project and property, in question, has been purchased to earn profit out of real estate speculations. It was admitted that as per clause 11(a) of the Agreement, possession of the allotted unit, was to be handed over to the complainant within 24 months from the signing of the Agreement subject to force majeure conditions or due to reasons beyond the...

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