MUMBAI: The Maharashtra Real Estate Regulatory Authority (MahaRera) has directed the developer of a Thane highrise to pay interest to eight flat buyers from the agreed date of possession till the date when the occupation certificate was obtained. The earliest agreed possession date was in December 2016, and latest in December 2017.
The eight complainants had booked flats in a project by Soham Estates called Tropical Lagoon on Ghodbunder Road. They moved MahaRera over the delay in possession and sought interest under Section 18 of the RERA Act till the date of actual possession. Their advocate Tanuj Lodha argued that the agreements were executed and the developer had agreed to hand over possession of flats on different dates between 2016 and 2018. However, he did not do so.
The developer’s advocate, Ajay Mehrul, countered that OC was obtained on August 3, 2018. He said the date of possession was May 31, 2018, and OC was applied for on May 9, 2018. He claimed that the Thane Municipal Corporation was responsible for the delay in getting OC and that there was no intentional delay by the developer to hand over the flats. However, the Authority noted that in the registered agreements the date of possession has been clearly recorded.
“…the respondent (developer) has not clarified as to why the project was delayed and why the possession of respective flats to the eight complainants has not been given,” said member Vijay Satbir Singh, in his September 4 order. He added that the complainants are, therefore, entitled to get relief under Section 18 of RERA Act “from the date of agreed possession in their respective agreements” till August 3, 2018, the date of occupation certificate. MahaRera said interest is to be paid to the complainants at marginal cost of lending rate plus 2% per annum. Sources said this works out to nearly 10.5% (simple interest) per annum for a 2-BHK flat costing approximately Rs 1 crore.