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Despite repeated requests, CHB failed to refund the money. After a delay of five years, CHB refunded the earnest money of Rs70,000 in 2013 but without any interest
Raj Kumar and Umed Singh, residents of Dhanas and Police Colony Sector 26, Chandigarh, booked a flat under the ‘Self Financing Housing Scheme 2008’ for employees of Chandigarh administration and deposited Rs70,000 as earnest money, taking a loan from State Cooperative Bank. In the draw of lots for allotment of flats under the Scheme, held in November 2010, both applicants were unsuccessful, after which they asked the Chandigarh Housing Board (CHB) to refund their money. CHB assured them that it will frame a policy and take a decision on allotment of flats to all the unsuccessful employees.
Despite repeated requests, CHB failed to refund the money. After a delay of five years, CHB refunded the earnest money of Rs70,000 in 2013 but without any interest.
The UT Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum directed CHB to pay interest at the savings bank rate on the earnest money deposited by the applicants along with Rs30,000 to each complainant as compensation and the litigation cost.
The Maharashtra government has directed district collectors to look into grievances of housing cooperative societies over deemed conveyance issues on Lokshahi Day, which falls on the first Monday of every month, or on every first or third Saturday of a month.
Conveyance has been a very vexatious issue in Maharashtra. According to the current norms, developers or landlords must transfer the title to the society’s name within four months of a society’s formation. However, most developers and landlords do not do this in order to retain rights like the future use of floor space index and legal ownership of the plot linked to the property title. These benefits should accrue to flat-owners.
To address this issue, the government initially streamlined the documentation required for conveyance. It also allows online applications to reduce the time and multiple visits to various government offices. However, these have not worked because of massive corruption. Now, the issue of deemed conveyance will be taken up and Lok Adalats provide an opportunity to representatives of housing societies to make their case.
Housing department officials said land titles are yet to be conveyed in 60,000 out of 90,000 eligible cooperative housing societies across the state.
Those seeking help or advice on CHS issues can contact Moneylife Foundation’s Legal Resource Centre (LRC) ( http://moneylife.in/lrc.html )