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Assam REAT penalizes builder for seeking unjustified payment

The Assam Real Estate Appellate Tribunal (REAT) has conveyed its strong displeasure over the conduct of a builder


Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  28 July 2022 2:36 AM GMT

GUWAHATI: The Assam Real Estate Appellate Tribunal (REAT) has conveyed its strong displeasure over the conduct of a builder who demanded payment from the buyers for non-existent additional built-up area of a villa purchased by them.

According to an official communiqué, the REAT made strong observations while deciding the appeal filed by the builder in the case of M/s Arya Erectors India Pvt Ltd vs Padum Deori and another. The buyers had executed a Deed of Agreement with the builder for the purchase of a villa in the 'Arya Smart Living' at Abhaypur in North Guwahati for a total built-up area of 1,877 square feet. According to the agreement, the villa was to be completed and handed over to the buyers within 36 months, meaning by February 9, 2019. After the buyers had made 90 per cent payment, the builder demanded additional payment for an increase of 473 square feet in the built-up area of the villas. However, a joint physical measurement, conducted by technical persons in the presence of the builder, revealed that the actual built-up area of the villas was 1,756 square feet. In other words, the built-up area was 121 square feet less than the area mentioned in the Deed of Agreement, whereas the builder was claiming that it was 473 square feet more. Neither the builder nor the buyers disputed the measurement taken during the joint inspection.

Dismissing the appeal, the REAT directed that the payment for the villa be made only for the actual built-up area of 1,756 square feet. The builder was also directed to pay the buyers interest at the rate of State Bank of India's Marginal Cost of Lending plus 2 per cent on the amount already paid by the buyers from February 10, 2019 till the date of handing over possession of the villas. The builder was further directed to complete the exercise of execution of the Conveyance Deed and the handing over of possession of the villas to the buyers within six weeks.

Expressing strong displeasure over the conduct of the builder, the tribunal observed that the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 was enacted with the object to ensure regulation and promotion of the real estate sector in an efficient and transparent manner as well as to protect the interests of consumers in the real estate sector. It was also observed that the present case illustrates, in a way, why the need for regulating the real estate sector, which led to enactment of the Act in 2016, had been emphasized.

The order was passed by Justice (Retd) Manojit Bhuyan, Chairperson of the REAT, and Onkar Kedia, Member, REAT.

Also Read: Flat buyers can't be left without legal remedy: Assam Real Estate Appellate Tribunal

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