Sunday, September 24, 2023

Now Noida, Greater Noida builders must pay as SC rolls back interest rate order cap

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In a major setback for the builders in noida and Greater Noida, the High Council on Monday recalled its order for 2020, capping the interest rate at 8 percent, for delays in the payment of land costs by builders to authorities.

A bank led by Chief Justice UU Lalit recalled the June 2020 order that ordered Noida and Greater Noida to cap interest rates to 8 percent for delays in the payment of land costs by builders, rather than a steep 15-23 percent.

During the hearing, senior attorney Ravindra Kumararepresenting the Noida and Greater authorities of Noidahad told that top court that the authorities will lose more than Rs 7,500 crore if its injunction to cap the interest rate, at about 8 percent, for the delay in the payment of land costs by builders were to continue.

Kumar had vehemently claimed that this order was not based on facts and that it would financially ruin the authorities and that more than Rs 7,500 crore would be gone with the stroke of a pen. “Builders will face unjust enrichment in excess of Rs 7,500 crore,” he had filed.

The authorities stressed the need for interest on land costs, arguing that no property tax is levied in the city of Noida, but that the metro services and good infrastructure are maintained, and also that no contractor has come to court after the award and claimed that the interest rate was very high. “No interest rate cuts (for builders) would be passed on to home buyers,” Kumar had argued in the highest court.

In September last year, authorities had urged the highest court to withdraw its injunction, citing that the builders had “not deposited any paisa” to pay their dues.

In its June 2020, amid the pandemic, the highest court cited the poor state of the real estate sector and the need to boost such housing projects, especially given the plight of home buyers and as noted by Noida and Greater Noida Authorities that 114 as of 2005 plots have been allocated, but most of the projects are incomplete.

“We will send that interest rate on the outstanding premium and other entitlements to be realized in all such cases at a rate of 8 percent per annum and have the Noida and Greater Noida authorities restructure the amortization schedule so that that amount is paid. And the Noida authorities and Greater Noida can achieve the same,” said the highest court.


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