New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Thursday came
down heavily on DDA for sealing 65 Commonwealth Games Village
flats after allocating them to various people.
Justice Hima Kohli chiding Delhi Development Authority
while rejecting its contention that the flats had been built
in violation of the floor area ratio (FAR) limit.
"Why did you seal the flats which were allotted to
people? Is it your statutory duty to pick and choose? What
were your officers doing all these years when the builder had
exceeded the FAR limit, said Justice Kohli and asked DDA
counsel Ajay Verma to explain the basis on which the agency
sealed flats in only two towers -- 5 and 15 -- but not in
other 32 towers.
Directing DDA to `deseal` the flats of eight petitioners,
who have approached the court against the sealing, in two
days, Justice Kohli ordered the civic agency not to take
further action till the final disposal of the petition
concerning the flat allotment issue.
"You shut your eyes when the construction was going on or
you wanted to protect the interest of certain people," the
court observed while rejecting DDA`s argument that it was its
statutory duty to comply with the direction of Appellate
Tribunal of MCD, which had asked DDA to hear the plea of the
builder and pass an order on the issue in two weeks.
The court was hearing CWG Allottees Welfare Association`s
plea against DDA`s action saying the agency had ignored its
earlier order and had failed to honour its words that it will
not take any coercive step against allottees till the Ministry
of Urban Development takes a final decision on the issue.
According to the association, DDA is in possession of the
entire project comprising 1168 flats. No party has any right
to claim 711 unencumbered flats.
In its petition, it said the allottees were at a loss in
the fight between the developer and the agency and that
instead of issuing the completion certificate to the project
developer, the agency has arbitrarily sealed the flats only in
DDA had sealed 65 flats on October 29 saying the order to
seal the towers was issued by the Building Department, even as
the land agency was waiting a final decision of the Ministry
of Urban Development on the issue of non-compoundable floor
Two of the 34 towers were sealed. Tower 5 has 28 flats
and Tower 15 has 36 flats. One flat on the top floor of tower
7 was also sealed.
According to the association, the DDA had earlier also
tried to seal these towers but was not allowed to do so by the
Appellate Tribunal of the Municipal Corporation of Delhi after
the developer approached it.
The tribunal had directed the Joint Director (Building)
to issue a detailed order within a period of two months. But,
the developer said it was yet to receive any such order.