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Photo: Hindustan Times
Photo: Hindustan Times

SC directs lenders to recast Amrapali homebuyers’ loans

  • The amount could be disbursed stage-wise and long-term restructuring of the loans may be done so that construction is completed and buyers are able to repay the loan, suggests SC
  • The amount is to be released in line with RBI norms

NEW DELHI : The Supreme Court on Wednesday directed banks and financial institutions involved in the Amrapali Group case to restructure the loans given to homebuyers. The amount is to be released in line with Reserve Bank of India (RBI) norms and disbursement of further loans are to be based on the present rate of interest fixed by RBI, the apex court ordered.

The amount could be disbursed stage-wise and long-term restructuring of the loans may be done so that construction is completed and buyers are able to repay the loan, suggested a bench headed by justice Arun Mishra while hearing the case of execution and handing over of the developer’s stalled housing projects in the national capital region.

The court directed banks and financial institutions to release loans to homebuyers in cases where these had been sanctioned, even if their accounts had been declared non-performing assets.

“Homebuyers who have obtained loans are unable to enjoy the fruits of their investment" as the projects have been stalled for several years, the bench held.

The court also passed orders on other related applications filed in the Amrapali case. “The court observed that to avail incremental FAR (floor area ratio) at Amrapali projects the homebuyers had borne the cost or charges. Thus, homebuyers cannot be deprived of additional FAR even if some monies are owed to these authorities. In case after completion of project any surplus remains, it can be released to Noida and Greater Noida authorities," said Vaibhav Suri, partner, L&L Partners.

The bench allowed the sale of the remaining FAR of Amrapali projects through the court appointed receiver, senior advocate R. Venkataramani, who is empowered to enter into a tri-party agreement to recover dues and pass on possession to homebuyers. The sale proceeds from FAR shall be used to generate funds to complete pending projects, it said.

The court clarified in its order that NBCC has been asked by it to complete the projects. Hence, they are granted immunity and are not liable in any cases filed by any existing homebuyers, previous contractors, co-developers, landowners, banks, financial institutions, other lenders and creditors, and any government authority before any other court, commission or authority.

The Supreme Court in July had directed the state-run NBCC to take over and complete its stalled projects of Amrapali Group. There are around 46,000 homebuyers who had invested in various Amrapali projects more than a decade ago, but many of them are yet to receive possession of their homes.

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