AHMEDABAD: As the Gujarat Housing Board (GHB) conducted draws recently and promised housing units to thousands of people in near future, Shahpur's Prakash Modi is likely to get his deposits back nearly 15 years after he had booked a house in GHB scheme, which was never materialized.
Modi booked a flat in the low income group (LIG) scheme that was to come up at Vasant Nagar township at Gota-Ognaj in the outskirts of the city in late 1990s. He paid Rs 31,000 in two instalments in 1999. He was ready to pay full amount of Rs 1.85 lakh, but GHB did not accept any further instalment. This was because GHB did not construct the houses.
In January 2010, Modi inquired with the GHB whether it would allot him a house in other scheme. The housing board did not respond, and this led Modi to send a legal notice to GHB in December 2010. He did not get any response. Modi moved the consumer dispute redressal forum, Ahmedabad (additional) and demanded that a house should be allotted to him and be compensated with Rs 25,000 for the decade-long wait.
The housing board did not react to the consumer court's proceedings too. The court concluded that the consumer had already paid the required amount, and was ready to pay more. But GHB did not construct houses and never returned the amount deposited by Modi. It said that 11 documents furnished by Modi established that GHB failed to fulfil its contract of construction and allotment of a house in LIG scheme at Gota.
Holding GHB responsible for the lapse, the consumer court has directed it to refund the money with 12% interest since 1999. The court also asked GHB to pay Rs 5,000 towards compensation for harassment and Rs 3,000 towards litigation cost. Moreover, the consumer court has asked the housing board to allot a housing unit to Modi, if there is a new scheme floated by GHB.