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Greater Noida: Buyers have to wait and watch

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In 2010, Rajesh Gupta booked a two-bedroom apartment in Patel's Neo Town in Noida Extension. After the Allahabad High Court cancelled land acquisition in Patwari village in which the project stands, Gupta is feeling helpless and doesn't know what to do.

Unlike in the Sahberi case, where the Supreme Court directed the Greater Noida authority and builders to refund money to affected buyers, there's no word from the high court on the Patwari judgment. Gupta realises that builders may not be able to refund money.

“If it was about one project, the builder could shift people to other projects or refund the money but what does he do when the entire Noida Extension is coming under cloud. He has invested the buyers' money into construction and is paying the suppliers. There's no way he can refund money to so many people,” said a broker in the area.

Gupta has no option but to wait and watch and hope that the Greater Noida authority renegotiates with farmers, or file a review petition in the courts, and find a solution. Ujwal Ray, who has booked a two-bed room apartment in Amrapali's Golf Homes in Noida Extension for Rs 20 lakh, faces a similar predicament.

Ray has invested all his savings and taken a bank loan to pay 30-40 per cent of the cost of the flat. Though his project has not been affected yet, he feels it's a matter of time before a court verdict annuls the land acquisition in another village where his project stands. Ray has been in touch with other customers - many like him have formed groups on social networking sites like Facebook (Noida & Noida Extension Owners & Members) in trying to stay connected and exchange notes on what they should do.

“My bank has stopped disbursement but refuses to communicate it to the builder. The builder, meanwhile, has sent a fresh demand letter seeking the next instalment,” said Ray, a 30-year-old professional who works in Mumbai and is a first-time home buyer.

“The company has been asking affected buyers to take the option of an alternative flat than take refunds. Those seeking refund are being sent back to get more documents. It's anyway difficult to be put through to Amrapali executives on the phone,” he said.

Ruchi Mitra has paid 34 per cent of the cost for her three-bedroom apartment at Ajnara's Homes 121 project that will cost her Rs 38 lakh. Despite paying nearly a third of the flat's cost, she wanted to cancel her booking until her father asked her to wait and watch.

According to the agreement, if buyers want to cancel their booking, they stand to lose 10-15 per cent of the money paid to builders. “If I cancel the allotment I will lose money and time. Moreover, I will not be able to get the cheap apartment. My priority is to pressurise the builder to provide the flat at the old rate,” said Dhiraj Sharma, one of the investors.

(In 2010, Rajesh Gupta booked a two-bedroom apartment in Patel's Neo Town in Noida Extension. After the Allahabad High Court cancelled land acquisition in Patwari village in which the project stands, Gupta is feeling helpless and doesn't know what to do.

Unlike in the Sahberi case, where the Supreme Court directed the Greater Noida authority and builders to refund money to affected buyers, there's no word from the high court on the Patwari judgment. Gupta realises that builders may not be able to refund money.

“If it was about one project, the builder could shift people to other projects or refund the money but what does he do when the entire Noida Extension is coming under cloud. He has invested the buyers' money into construction and is paying the suppliers. There's no way he can refund money to so many people,” said a broker in the area.

Gupta has no option but to wait and watch and hope that the Greater Noida authority renegotiates with farmers, or file a review petition in the courts, and find a solution. Ujwal Ray, who has booked a two-bed room apartment in Amrapali's Golf Homes in Noida Extension for Rs 20 lakh, faces a similar predicament.

Ray has invested all his savings and taken a bank loan to pay 30-40 per cent of the cost of the flat. Though his project has not been affected yet, he feels it's a matter of time before a court verdict annuls the land acquisition in another village where his project stands. Ray has been in touch with other customers - many like him have formed groups on social networking sites like Facebook (Noida & Noida Extension Owners & Members) in trying to stay connected and exchange notes on what they should do.

“My bank has stopped disbursement but refuses to communicate it to the builder. The builder, meanwhile, has sent a fresh demand letter seeking the next instalment,” said Ray, a 30-year-old professional who works in Mumbai and is a first-time home buyer.

“The company has been asking affected buyers to take the option of an alternative flat than take refunds. Those seeking refund are being sent back to get more documents. It's anyway difficult to be put through to Amrapali executives on the phone,” he said.

Ruchi Mitra has paid 34 per cent of the cost for her three-bedroom apartment at Ajnara's Homes 121 project that will cost her Rs 38 lakh. Despite paying nearly a third of the flat's cost, she wanted to cancel her booking until her father asked her to wait and watch.

According to the agreement, if buyers want to cancel their booking, they stand to lose 10-15 per cent of the money paid to builders. “If I cancel the allotment I will lose money and time. Moreover, I will not be able to get the cheap apartment. My priority is to pressurise the builder to provide the flat at the old rate,” said Dhiraj Sharma, one of the investors.

(Names of flat buyers have been changed at their request to protect their identities)

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