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SC cancels Amrapali Group's RERA registration, orders NBCC to complete pending projects

A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and U U Lalit also cancelled the leases of Amrapali's properties granted by the Noida and Greater Noida authorities and directed the Enforcement Directorate to investigate alleged money laundering by CMD Anil Sharma and other directors and senior officials of the group.

India TV News Desk India TV News Desk
New Delhi Updated on: July 23, 2019 13:28 IST
The apex court reserved the verdict in the matter on May 10

The apex court reserved the verdict in the matter on May 10 after Noida and Greater Noida authorities said they don't have the resources and expertise to construct the stalled projects of Amrapali Group.

The Supreme Court on Tuesday cancelled the registration of the Amrapali group and appointed the state-run National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC) to complete all its pending projects, bringing great relief to thousands of home buyers who had invested their money with it. 

A bench of Justices Arun Mishra and U U Lalit also cancelled the leases of Amrapali's properties granted by the Noida and Greater Noida authorities and directed the Enforcement Directorate to investigate alleged money laundering by CMD Anil Sharma and other directors and senior officials of the group.

The bench appointed senior advocate R Venkataramani as the court receiver. All rights of Amrapali properties will be vested with him after the cancellation of lease.

The top court said Venkataramani will have the power to enter into any tri-party agreement for sale of the group's properties to recover dues.

The bench, which cancelled the group's registration under the Real Estate Regulatory Authority, said the home buyers' money was diverted in violation of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA) and foreign direct investment (FDI) norms.

The court added that the Noida and Greater Noida authorities colluded with the realty group in allowing diversion of the home buyers' money and not acting in accordance with the law.

It said Noida and Greater Noida have no right to sell the properties of the Amrapali group to recover their dues.

In a relief to over 42,000 hassled home buyers, the court also directed Noida and Greater Noida to give completion certificates to flat buyers already residing in various projects of the group.

It further asked the Centre and the state governments to take appropriate action against the builders who have not delivered the group projects on time.

CASE FILE

The apex court reserved the verdict in the matter on May 10 after Noida and Greater Noida authorities said they don't have the resources and expertise to construct the stalled projects of Amrapali Group.

Both the authorities had favoured handing over the properties to a reputed builder under the supervision of a high powered committee.

The authorities had expressed inability to take any action like cancellation of lease agreements against the group, which regularly defaulted on payments, due to "bulk of home buyers" and "political weight".

Both the authorities told the apex court that they have outstanding of around Rs 5,000 crore from Amrapali towards the principal amount and interest component, besides the penal interest.

The top court on May 8 said that it may give ownership rights of all the 15 prime residential properties of Amrapali to Noida and Greater Noida Authorities as it has failed to fulfil its obligations towards 42,000 home buyers.

The bench had then reserved its verdict on the question as to who will take over the management control and which builder or developer should finish the stalled projects of Amrapali.

The court had asked Noida authority to explain what action it has taken against Amrapali Group which was a "chronic defaulter" in payment of lease amount.

Noida authority said that under their jurisdiction they have seven projects of Amrapali and they have an outstanding of nearly ₹2,000 crore while they had received only ₹505 crore.

It had conceded that besides issuing repetitive show cause notices to Amrapali Group for defaulting in payments to Noida, they have not done anything.

Similar stand was taken by Greater Noida authority which had said that Amrapali Group has five projects under its jurisdiction out of which four are vacant lands and no construction has taken place.

Greater Noida authority had said that Amrapali has an outstanding of around 3400 crores and has paid only ₹363 crores till now.

After the reluctance shown by Noida and Greater Noida, the top court had indicated that the National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC) Limited could be one of the option to complete the stalled projects.

The court appointed forensic auditors -- Pawan Aggarwal and Ravinder Bhatia -- have found wide scale irregularities in the financial affairs of Amrapali Group and their initial report has suggested that over ₹3,000 crore of home buyers money.

On May 8, the apex court had said that it would throw Amrapali out from its properties and transfer its lock, stock and barrel to Noida and Greater Noida.

On February 28, the apex court had allowed the Delhi police to arrest Amrapali group CMD Anil Sharma and two directors on a complaint that home-buyers of their various housing projects were cheated and duped of their funds.

The top court, which is seized of several pleas of home-buyers seeking possession of around 42,000 flats booked in projects of the Amrapali group, also ordered attachment of personal properties of the CMD as also its directors -- Shiv Priya and Ajay Kumar.

(with inputs from PTI)

WATCHBig blow to Amrapali Group as SC cancels RERA registration, directs NBCC to complete unfinished projects

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