NGT Okhla Order – an illegal excuse to “No delay penalty” by Noida Builders

Are you told that delay penalty will not be given because of NGT order on Noida Projects? You are being fooled.

[Edit/Update : 19-08-2015] : The final notification declaring Eco Sensitive Zone (ESZ) around Okhla bird sanctuary has been issued by Government of India in the Gazette of India vide S/o-2262 (E) dated 19th August 2015. Buffer zone has been reduced to 100 meters and 1.2 kms on either side. [ Government Issues Final Notification ]

National Green Tribunal in April 2013 decided to halt the handover of close to 100000 apartments In Noida. It ruled that Noida Authority should not issue Occupancy Certificate (OC) / Completion Certificate (CC) to all the group housing project that falls under 10 kms radius of Okhla Bird Sanctuary. OC/CC are mandatory for getting your home registered. In absence of OC/CC, you can not legally possess a house.  Refer to this article for NGT issue in detail: NGT Order on Noida Projects

As if not getting the physical possession of the apartment was not enough, builders from Noida decided to exploit the home buyers further. All of a sudden most of them came up with their own version of order and started misleading the home buyer over the entire NGT saga. Home buyers are being told that they shall not be able to claim delay penalty because of NGT directing Noida Authority to not issue OC.

“The Logical Buyers” would take you through the entire game of invoking Force Majeure and denying delay penalty. Before we begin, you should know that NGT never stopped the construction.

Based on NGT order, your project could fit in following categories: 

  1. Ready for possession before April 2013: The construction had already completed by April 2013 and builder had applied for Occupancy Certificate. In this case builder is not at fault and he can deny paying any delay penalty April 2013 onward.
  2. Ready for possession after April 2013 but before Aug 2015: The construction completed only after April 2013. For example, if builder completed the construction in November 2013 and applied for OC, he is liable to pay delay penalty upto Nov 2013. After this he can deny paying penalty.
  3. Ready for possession after Aug 2015: In case the developer finished the construction after 19-08-2015 and applied for OC, the NGT ban was over by than and builder must pay penalty for entire duration.
  4. Still under construction: In this case builder would not have applied for OC yet. NGT order will not be applicable till the date builder finishes the construction and apply for OC. For example if builder completes the project in November 2015, he is liable to pay delay penalty till Nov 2015.

In all above cases one should be careful about the new game plan of Noida builders. Builders are applying for OC even when apartments are far from completion. This ensures that they don’t have to give delay penalty because they qualifies for point #2 in above scenarios.

Therefore, if the builder is denying delay penalty by using NGT as Force Majeure, buyers should validate the following claims:

  1. When did project construction actually complete.
  2. When did builder apply for OC.
  3. What are the reasons for not issuing the OC as per Noida Authority.
  4. FilesRTI to know the facts.  Learn about filing RTI : File RTI with Noida Authority

Buyers should ensure that reason for not giving the OC was NGT only. In one of the Noida’s builder case, builder kept claiming that he is being denied OC because of NGT. However, through RTI, buyers learned that NGT was not the reason for denial of OC by Noida Authority and it was builder’s inability to comply with Noida’s rule book. Actual reasons were:

  1. No Clarence from Fire Department.
  2. No structural safety certificate.
  3. No electricity and sewerage connection.
  4. Lift safety certificate.
  5. No dues certificate.
  6. No water harvesting, no tree plantation  and so on..

Unless the builder furnishes the above mentioned and many more information, he can’t not justify that OC was actually denied because of NGT order. In case the reason for denying the delay penalty is something else, have a look here: Force Majeure

“The Logical Buyers” asked Noida for reason of denying OC to developer and below is copy of RTI reply that nowhere mention that reason for not issuing the OC was NGT.

Objection on OC by Noida
Objection on OC by Noida

Let us know if you have any question and we would be happy to help.

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