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Ajnara Ambrosia homebuyers say delay in handover has wrecked their life plans

While the project was formally launched in 2014, the date of delivery differed from agreement to agreement. Eight years later buyers are yet to get possession of their homes. Construction has come to a complete halt.

The initial completion of the project, Ajnara Ambrosia, was scheduled for December 2019. However, construction came to a halt in 2017.

The initial completion of the project, Ajnara Ambrosia, was scheduled for December 2019. However, construction came to a halt in 2017.

There were several reasons why homebuyers bought into the Ajnara Ambrosia project in Noida Sector 118 when it was launched in 2014. Some bought it because of the location, others invested as the project provided easy access to the Faridabad–Noida–Ghaziabad Expressway and because of the easy payment options available. Today, around 1,100 homebuyers (spread across 10 towers)  are still waiting for their dream home despite having paid almost 90 percent of the amount to the builder.

While the project was formally launched in 2014, the date of delivery differed from agreement to agreement. “It’s been a wait of more than seven years but the project is yet to be handed over to us. Construction, too, came to a grinding halt four years ago,” buyer Manish Kumar Gupta told Moneycontrol.

The project was expected to have four residential phases comprising of 14 residential towers and around 2000 units. As part of the first phase, two towers comprising 279 flats were delivered by the builder (Tower H in 2019 and Tower F in 2020) by issuing fitout certificates — a letter which says that the builder has applied for an occupation certificate and that the buyers can take possession for interior work or fit-outs. Buyers have to pay up the entire amount and are responsible for their safety, too. The letter doesn’t provide a timeline for getting a completion certificate from authorities.

No occupancy certificate — the document giving occupation rights issued by authorities after they inspect the property for adhering to fire safety, elevators, electrical wiring, water supply, and waste disposal norms — has been received due to which registration of units cannot take place. That’s because the developer still owes dues to Noida Authority, claim homebuyers. A response from the Noida Authority on the total dues from the builder for the project is awaited.

IVR Prime Developers (Avadi) Pvt Ltd is the promoter of Ajnara Ambrosia. IVR is jointly owned by Ajnara India and Supertech, according to a spokesperson of the company.

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As per the information provided by UPRERA, Ajnara Ambrosia is under the umbrella of  IVR Prime Developers (AVADI) Pvt Ltd.

The Ajnara Ambrosia project application form also clearly states that the land has been leased to M/s IVR Prime Developers (AVADI) Private Limited, a company having its office at 1114, Hemkunt Chambers, 89, Nehru Place, New Delhi-110019. The Lessee (i.e. M/s IVR Prime Developers (AVADI) Private Limited) has been conveyed Group Housing Plot No. GH-01, Sector-118, Noida, Distt. Gautam Budh Nagar (U. P.) admeasuring 1,42,967 Square Meters by New Okhla Industrial Development Authority (NOIDA) by way of 2 (two) registered Deeds i.e. Lease Deed dated 19/04/2012 and Supplementary Deed dated 23/10/2013 as per the terms and conditions contained therein.

The initial completion of the project was scheduled for December 2019. However, construction came to a halt in 2017.

On the ownership of IVR Prime Developers, a spokesman for Ajnara said IVR was jointly held by both the companies. "Ownership of land is not the reason for the delay.”

According to Ajnara India spokesperson, “the project was delayed due to Covid-19, NGT orders and demonetization etc.” Other sources familiar with the development said a funding crunch also contributed to the delay in construction.

More than 100 real estate projects located within a 10km radius of the Okhla Bird sanctuary were affected because of the national green tribunal's (NGT) order dated August 14, 2013. The order directed the Noida Authority to stop all kinds of construction without requisite environmental clearances.

After the builder failed to complete the units, some buyers knocked on the Uttar Pradesh Real Estate Regulatory Authority’s (UPRERA) doors in 2018. UPRERA asked the district administration to recover the defaulted amounts from the builder through so-called recovery certificates, but the money is yet to be recovered. Moreover, UPRERA also fined the builder Rs 51 lakh for not complying with its orders.

In 2021, close to 100 buyers of Ajnara Ambrosia decided to approach the National Company Law Tribunal (NCLT). In April 2021, NCLT-Delhi issued notice to Ajnara India Ltd, but the case is yet to be admitted by the NCLT. The next date of hearing is on July 29.

When asked about the current status of the project, the company spokesperson said that the project is under construction. He said that three towers (we are saying two earlier in the copy) have been handed over to customers for fit-outs and that occupancy certificates are ‘under process.’. This claim is, however, disputed by buyers who said that the builder had asked allottees of the third tower C to pay 100 percent of the flat’s price and promised them that they would get the flat ready in 90 days. According to the information shared by UPRERA, all four phases are currently ‘ongoing’.

The remaining towers will be delivered in the next 15 months, the company spokesperson said. The amount required to complete the remaining towers and the facilities therein is approximately Rs 90-100 crore, the spokesperson said. Ajnara will get this money from payments due from homebuyers under different payment plans such as subvention and construction linked, said the Ajnara spokesperson.

Established in 1991, the Ajnara group is headed by Ashok Gupta who is the co-founder and managing director. According to UPRERA data, Ajnara India has six ongoing projects, while it has received completion certificates for two projects. Associate company Ajnara Realtech has two ongoing projects. The regulator’s web site also shows that currently 308 complaints are registered against Ajnara India Ltd. and 150 against Ajnara Realtech Ltd. About 99 complaints have been filed for Ajnara Ambrosia alone.

Cancelled licences

Buyers fear that the Ambrosia project’s licence will be cancelled just as the licences of two other Ajnara projects were cancelled in Greater Noida.

In May, the allotment of land to Ajnara Realtech for the project Ajnara Le Garden in Greater Noida (West) was cancelled on account of non-payment of dues worth Rs 63 crore to the Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority (GNIDA) after 11 years. This is the second Ajnara project whose land allotment was cancelled in less than two months. On April 21, the Yamuna Expressway Industrial Development Authority had cancelled the allotment of the Panorama project in Sector 22A over non-payment of dues worth Rs 46.8 crore.

Buyers’ plight

Manish Kumar Gupta booked a flat in 2012 as it was close to a hospital and was connected to the FNG Road. Since construction was in full swing from 2014 to 2017, he paid almost 90 percent of the cost of the apartment to the builder by 2016.

“All my dreams were shattered. Instead of peace of mind, my heart broke into pieces,” he says.

“I have paid up almost 90 percent of the cost of the unit and there is no hope on earth that I will get my house as there is no construction on the ground. We have been waiting for almost seven years now,” he says.

Some buyers such as Nipun Mahajan, who had bought into the project way back in 2014, were lured by a subvention scheme under which the builder would have to pay EMIs until possession. Under this scheme, a buyer is required only to pay 5-15 percent of the total price of the property to the developer. A loan, granted for the remaining amount in the buyer’s name, is dispersed to the developer who then has to pay equated monthly installments (EMI) to the lender till the buyer is handed over possession of said property.

“In 2017, banks stopped this scheme and the builder stopped paying within four months. Due to this the buyers were compelled to start paying EMIs which were to be paid by the builder under the subvention scheme. Under a no EMIs until possession arrangement, a buyer pays a higher amount than the rest. All that is gone down the drain now,” he laments.

Vishal Grover, a buyer nearing retirement, says that investing in this project was perhaps the “worst decision I have ever made. Right now I am paying both rent and EMI and am not sure if I will be able to afford it going forward as I am nearing retirement,” he says. “All my life plans have gone for a toss due to this decision.” 

Another buyer, Rajnish Kumar, told Moneycontrol: “The truth is that we do not have a roof above our heads. There is no work happening at the construction site and even if a new builder were to come in and complete it, somebody will have to conduct a construction quality audit.”

Project Timeline

2014 –Ajnara Ambrosia is launched

2017 – Construction comes to a grinding halt

2018 – Buyers approach UPRERA

2021 – Buyers file case in NCLT

2022 – Case yet to be admitted to NCLT
Moneycontrol News
first published: Aug 4, 2022 04:55 pm
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