Saturday, September 28, 2013

Era Landmarks: You will be forced to believe in the difference!!

Its no easy task to cheat consumers at each stage of each project, to carry out such large scale scam that too within NCR region and around, with aplomb and panache; speaks volumes of the enterprise "ERA LANDMARKS" and its efficient Employees. One Builder has the stamina and stomach to grab thousands of Indian middle class persons money, and no one even raises a finger. How is this happening, who is helping him unleash fraudulent schemes in the name of dream housing, why isn't the Govt. Departments getting to the root of this fraud, why is media quite when on other issues it is so vocal and unforgiving, many questions to which maybe we might not be able to get answers yet. However, lets see what the situation on ground is.. we start first with the millennium city, where Era has sold 4 projects till date and if you start counting these in number of phases...then you will need more fingers then what I have...


In sector-103, project sold by Era to intending allottees as Plots in January 2012. an Agreement Executed, which said that if the company can not give possession or allotment of the said plot within 18 months of the day of the booking it would refund the money so collected with an interest of 9%. The story thereafter is no different from others, therefore easy to believe.. see what a consumer has posted on Icomplaints portal..

Era landmarks was giving advt in the newspaper and internet about their township in Gurgoan Sector-103 by the name Cosmos City. I contacted them thorugh their official dealer V S Realtor India Pvt Lt Mr Vijay jha and come to know they are also launching plots in that area for which I paid 60% of the plot value and was issued receipt from their office. I paid this entire amount through my Canara Bank NRE account. They made an agreement on Rs 100 stamp paper that if they fail to provide the said plot within 18 months, they will refund the money with interest after that. As they failed to give me plot as agreed I asked them in writing to refund the amount but they failed so far. I have given this written request to them on 13th June 2013 but they are giving all the excuses. I owe them about Rs 75 Lakhs.
My customer code with Era Landsmarks is 047/S0013 with respect of GDEP/103/133 for Gurgaon plots. 
I need my hard earned money back as I a retired man now but see that I have to fight a lengthy battle with them to get my money back, which I am forced to do now.
Hereby requested the Era landmarks management and VS Realtors, to see the writing on the wall and mind , this is the hard earned money by me which they are holding beyond the agreed terms and conditions which will force me to take all the available legal options at my end which will ultmately spoil our relationship.
New Delhi

...The story of other allottees of this project is similar, they are trying hard to get refund..but Era is not listening. Why..why is it not fulfilling its contractual obligation, if it has the land and the license why does it not deliver on the promises.. the important question is does ERA have land and license in its name.. I wonder, as I was not able to get any license record on the TCP website for a plotted colony in any builders name since 2009 to 2013, in sector-103.


Year 2006, when Era sold hundreds of plots to gullible consumers. These valuable consumers have started receiving letters from Era that the plan for the project has changed and now (after 7 long Years) the company is launching Group Housing Scheme instead of the Plotted colony. Infact Era is forcing them to convert their booking to flats in the GH scheme that too at the prevalent market rate....Rahul Gandhi..would have said, "What Nonsense"!! But we are not him and can not afford the grandstanding!! below is verbatim manuscript of a consumer complaint of this very project and here i would like to inform you all, that some consumers of this project have already filed police complaints in Bhadurgarh police station as well.. yet the builder is not willing to budge from his arrogant stand..

We booked a plot measuring 300 sq. yds in pre launch project at Bahadurgarh (Haryana) of Era Infrastructure India Limited (now Era Landmarks India Limited) in year 2006 but since then there was no allotment done by the builder on the ground of some legal clearances but we were being assured that they would be launching the project soon.
Now we got a letter dated 02-Jul-2013 from the builder that they are offering us the Flat but on today's prevailing rates and size as per our paying capacity.

We sent a few letters asking for the reason behind this as this is unethical and a fraud with the consumer but the builder is not responding on this.

My details are:
Himanshu Bansal
Mobile: 9818040756
Two projects sold as plots.. both undelivered after years of booking.. will they meet the same fate.. no one except Era, knows the reality. Why is Era doing this, why not a single project sold by Era is delivered the way it is promised and on time, is Era not concerned at all about its relation with consumers, is it consumers fault that they believe the difference and get associated with their projects.. again too many questions which may remain unanswered, as the consumers suffer and are forced to believe in the difference of a new reality every time they go to Era's office for answers......which change with every season...but the consumers suffering does not!!!

Friday, September 27, 2013

External Development Charges (EDC)

Before we dwell upon what EDC is all about, there are a couple of institutions that we need to know a little about to understand the whole concept. Primary is, of course, the Town and Country Planning Haryana. This department is responsible to REGULATE the development and also to check the haphazard developments in and around towns in accordance with the provisions of the following statues:-

1. The Punjab Scheduled Roads and controlled Areas Restrictions of Unregulated Development Act,1963.
2. The Haryana Development and Regulations of Urban Areas Act, 1975.
3. The Punjab New (Capital) Periphery Control Act, 1952.

In order to involve the private sector in the process of urban development, the Department grants licenses to the private colonizers for the development of Residential, Commercial, Industrial and IT Park/Cyber Park Colonies in accordance with the provisions of the Haryana Development and Regulation of Urban Areas Act, 1975 and rules framed thereunder. On grant of license to the private colonizer the Directorate u/s 3 (3 (ii)) takes an undertaking from the colonizer to pay proportionate Development charges if the external development works as defined in clause (g) of section 2 are to be carried out by the Government or any other local authority.  This amount is on gross acre of the colony that the Colonizer intends to develop and construct and is fixed by the Directorate as per policy for the year of the license. That means in the Urban Estate of Sector-75-89 Faridabad, for year 2006 the rate was fixed as 94.94 lacs per gross acre. Therefore all licensee's of that calendar year would be charged the same rate for the same Urban Estate as per policy. Therefore this is the Govt. Agency/Body that issues license to the colonizer and charges the EDC on the Colonizer, who in turn is allowed to collect the same from its consumers/Home Buyers and Deposit the recovered amounts in the accounts of HUDA.

HUDA or Haryana Urban Development Authority is primarily engaged in the planned development of the Urban estates of the state. It undertakes development of land after the same has been acquired by the Govt. of Haryana through its Urban Estates Department for specific land usages, like residential, commercial and Industrial etc. in accordance with the provisions of the development plans of the particular area, which are prepared and published by the Director Town and Country Planning Haryana, in exercise of powers conferred by sub-section 7 of section 5 of The Punjab Scheduled Roads and controlled Areas Restrictions of Unregulated Development Act,1963. HUDA is empowered to acquire, sell and dispose off property, both movable and immovable and also to use this acquired land for residential, industrial, recreational and commercial purpose. HUDA, also carries out all EDC works through out the licensed areas granted to the Colonizers as per master plans prepared by Town and Country Planning Haryana. Further, HUDA makes available developed land to Haryana Housing Board and other bodies for providing houses to economically weaker sections of the society.

So it is clear that Town and Country Planning charges the EDC and HUDA collects the same to fulfill the objective of planned development of the urban estates. Therefore we shall now understand EDC. EDC or External Development Charges, is defined U/s 2(g) of The Haryana Development and Regulations of Urban Areas Act, 1975. It says, "External Development Works include water supply, sewerage, drains, necessary provisions of treatment and disposal of sewage, sullage and storm water, roads, electrical works, solid waste management and disposal, slaughter houses, colleges, hospitals, stadium/sports complex, fire stations, grid sub-stations etc. and any other work which the Director may specify to be executed in the periphery of or outside colony/area for the benefit of the colony/area".

Each Home Owner or intending home buyer has to pay his proportionate share of EDC demanded by the builder for the external development works that are carried out by the HUDA. The calculation is simple arithmetic. If we take above example then for a colony of the size of 10 acres the amount of EDC per gross acre @ 94.94 lacs per acre, equals to 9.494 crores. This amount the builder has to collect from all allottees. as per FAR for group housing scheme the colonizer, in 10 acres project can build an area 10 acres X 1.75 X 4046.86 X 10.76= 7,40,251 sq. ft. Therefore the builder can easily divide the total cost of 9.494 crore by the area that he can construct and sell to get the per square feet cost. Therefore 94940000/ 740251 = INR 128.25. ( for your builder calculation you need to check the actual FAR he is using , as this is the max permissible FAR and mostly builders are able to utilize some decimal points less then the max permissible). This is an Ideal situation but builders do not sell on FAR    calculations.. they have devised a devil in the name of SUPER AREA which according to their BUILDER BUYER Agreement is about 25-30% over and above the FAR Area, which invariably means, if more area is divisible by the total charge (EDC AMOUNT) then the per square feet cost would come down. In the case in hand, if area is increased by 30% , than the total area would jump to 9,62,326 lac sq.ft., thus EDC now would amount to 94940000/962326= INR 98.70 Approx. per sq. ft. But what the Builder does in reality, he charges Rs150/- per square feet on super area which means a cool profit of Rs 41.30 per feet, which adds up to a humongous INR 3.97 crore, for entire 10 Acre project. Voila!! Isn't it fantastic that on a mere payment of 9 crore the builder has profited to the tune of approx 4 crores? Which other business would give you such super profits.. can not think of any other.

But the game does not stop here. Had it, we Indians would have been spared the trauma of living in un-developed/under-development urban estates of the state of Haryana.  The Builder even after over charging in the name of Govt. expenses does not pay the prescribed amount of EDC to the authorities within stipulated time schedule and the authorities who are supposed to REGULATE planned development easily turn a blind eye to this violation of bilateral agreement between self and builders, thereby allowing on one hand, easy back door liquidity to the builder ( who uses these amounts for other business purposes) and on the other hand sacrificing or defeating the purpose of planned development ( cause without funds authorities have easy escape route of deferring External development works) in the urban estates of Haryana. The builders generally pay EDC money, either at the time of renewal of license or when they need Occupation Certificate, which means only after three or four years of starting construction and collection of EDC amounts from home buyers.

This is a vicious cycle in which most Home Buyers in Haryana find themselves today. What can we, as consumers do, so that builders can not fleece higher then prescribed EDC from us? How can we find out what amount is demanded from Builder by the Authorities and how much he has paid after collecting from us? We can file RTI to the SPIO Branch accounts, C/o Directorate Town and Country planning Haryana, sector-18, Madhya Marg, Chandigarh, Haryana and get the required ledgers -  provided you have the license number of the colony.   But this will not help in controlling the overcharging by builder and non-payment, as no matter how many proofs you have for licensee's violations the department is hand in glove with the builder and would not take any action. Therefore, the only way this malpractice can be avoided is, if we as consumer groups pressurize the Director to formulate a policy wherein the Director at the time of issuance of License declares on its website along with other details, the total EDC payable on a particular license as well as the cost per flat that needs to be paid by the home buyer ( for all categories of flat the department is sanctioning the layout plan) and mandates the builder to furnish the information available on the departments website                              ( ) to its consumers, who would be duty bound thereafter to pay  directly to the office of HUDA their respective share. This way the authorities would be able to collect EDC money faster and more importantly without delay and also the chance for over charging would be completely eliminated. I hope representation for such policy mechanism should come from each RWA and consumer groups so that Director General, Town and Country Planning Haryana makes such or any other better policy in this regard.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Zee Business Xposes Builders In India Part-1

Zee Business campaigns hard to highlight the mal-practices that plague the Real Estate Industry in India. The issues that a man buying a house in Maharashtra faces is same as what a home buyer in Lucknow would face, it does not matter is your builder is reputed/branded realtor or a small first timer, it does not matter which govt. authority you take your complaint too, every where the complainant is either not heard or dismissed as frivolous complainant, therefore the public offices misfeasance; facilitates and helps the guilty Realtor to escape law and further harm and injure the complainant.

It is a fact that Apartment owners have been duped by each and every builder, no flat in India has been conveyed or registered as per the respective apartment ownership Act of the States. The Common Areas and Community Buildings as envisaged by the legislators to be co-owned by the Apartment owners are illegally sold by the Realtors to third party thereby thwarting/defeating the basic concept of community living in the group housing scheme.

Above is the link of the Zee telecast where the panelists discuss the Builders false promises and mis-represenatation at the point of sale which causes grave injury to the prospective buyers. Please share the same with as many apartment owners you know. Take Care!!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

ERA LANDMARKS not only Cheats but threatens aswell

Dear Friends,

Please find the link of the latest ZEE BUSINESS debate on TV where in panelist discuss the issues relating to ERA LANDMARKS methods of cheating its consumers. The Builders on the show put all the onus of finding facts with regards to legal sanctity of project on to the consumers, without considering the fact that the builder is responsible  as well, if he is providing wrong facts or not providing facts by procrastinating, then he should be held liable for fraud and put behind bars. So that other such unscrupulous elements dread using the same or similar modus operandi to cheat citizens of the nation.

Do write in your feed back, so that the same can be presented to the channel. Take care and God Bless!!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Fraud by Era Landmarks; EXPOSED

ZEE BUSINESS exposes the malpractices of Colonizers, who promise dream homes with lots of amenities and facilities which the Colonizers never fulfill but charge the home buyers for them. Today, Indian Real Estate landscape is full of such crony capitalists who have turned builders to gain exponentially by short charging the Home Buyers in the name of dream homes with hyped facilities. It is convenient for such unscrupulous Builders as the law is very slow in catching up with their frauds and to punitively punish them, thereby giving them ample opportunity to swindle lakhs of home buyers.
Here is the link of the episode which is being aired by Zee Business on their weekly programme, " Property Plus". It will be aired again at 6 PM today (Saturday) and it would be repeated through out the day on Sunday (check Channel for timings) ...

Try and watch it to understand the how different builders adopt different malpractices and unfair trade practices to dupe home buyers in India.. Take care!!