Amrapali projects: Home buyers see light at end of tunnel

Amrapali Case: Unfinished Business

The Amrapali Dream Valley project in Noida Extension lies unfinished. (Express Photo: Gajendra Yadav)

For the last few years, Daleep Bhan has been receiving treatment for colon cancer. That’s just one of his worries, though — the 61-year-old has also been waiting, in vain, to get possession of his 2 BHK home in Amrapali Smart City, for which he has already paid Rs 20 lakh.
Battling for his health and struggling to keep up with medical bills, Daleep’s only hope is finding permanence inside four walls that are yet to be fully built.

“Today’s judgment brings some hope. Due to my poor health, I have not been very active in the process (of pushing for the home), but I keep getting news about the status of the case. I purchased the home in 2010 and was promised possession in 2013. Now that the NBCC is supposed to take over, we hope some work is done. It feels like the doors have opened,” said Daleep, who works as a bank manager.

The Supreme Court Tuesday cancelled the RERA registration of Amrapali, acknowledging that the National Building Construction Corporation (NBCC) needs to step in to complete homes for almost 42,000 buyers. The findings come after a petition was submitted in court over years of defaulting by the Amrapali Group, costing individual buyers lakhs of rupees with no flat possession.

From candle marches to a 45-day protest outside the Amrapali office over the last six years, Amrapali home buyers have left no stone unturned to force authorities to act on their plight. As a result, insolvency proceedings against the group by the National Company Law Tribunal began, followed by a Supreme Court trial.

Tired and frustrated of the wait, some home buyers remain sceptical. “It is a welcome step no doubt. The Supreme Court’s findings are in the interest of the buyer. But the fact remains — where will the funding come from? There is still a lot of money required to complete the projects. The next step of financing is crucial,” said K K Kaushal, a home buyer and a petitioner in the case.

With properties of Anil Sharma, CMD of Amrapali, and other company assets being auctioned, home buyers recalled loss of pension money, savings and the pinch of monthly EMI for flats that at the moment look like ghost units.

“I have been paying EMI for several years but possession is nowhere in sight. The Supreme Court order will definitely be a catalyst but NBCC was brought in earlier as well and nothing concrete materialised. This money is from our savings and every penny was collected with a lot of hard work. All we want is our house,” said Kuldeep, who purchased a 2 BHK in Dream Valley nine years ago.