Homebuyers Approach Delhi Court Seeking Prosecution of Real Estate Firm for 'Organised Crime'
According to the complaint, directors of four real estate firms are accused of cheating a large number of investors on the pretext of allotment of flats, shops, commercial spaces in its proposed projects at Noida, Greater Noida, Gurgaon, etc.
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New Delhi: An association of homebuyers has approached a Delhi court seeking prosecution of a real estate company and its officials under the stringent law MCOCA to curb "organised crime" in the real estate sector.
Unific Tech-one Patrons Independent Association, an association of real estate buyers, filed a complaint before Additional Sessions judge Ashish Aggarwal seeking a direction to the Delhi Police to prosecute the directors of Earth Infrastructure under the Maharashtra Control of Organised Crime Act (MCOCA) for allegedly cheating hundreds of investors of thousands of crores of rupees by committing "organised crime".
The Economic Offences Wing (EOW) of the Delhi Police, however, has told the court that the provisions of MCOCA cannot be invoked, the association's counsel Amit Kumar said.
Kumar told the court that the FIR invoking the provisions of MCOCA against the errant builders are required since the existing legal framework has proved to be inadequate to curb or control the menace of organised crime in real estate sector. The court will further hear the matter on November 13.
In his complaint, the association has sought initiation of proceedings to prosecute four directors of Earth Infrastructure -- Avdhesh Kumar, Rajneesh Mittal, Atul Gupta and Vikas Gupta -- under the section of MCOCA for its failed projects.
According to the complaint, the four directors are accused of cheating a large number of investors on the pretext of allotment of flats, shops, commercial spaces in its proposed projects at Noida, Greater Noida, Gurgaon, etc.
Several project-wise cases were registered against the company and its four directors, who are in judicial custody and facing trial for offences of cheating, criminal conspiracy and criminal breach of trust, it said.
The complainants, however, want them to be prosecuted under MCOCA for cheating thousands of investors in an organised manner. Since the association had also made a similar complaint before the EOW before moving the court, the judge sought a status report from the police.
It its reply, the police told the court that to apply the provisions of MCOCA, something more in the nature of coercive acts and violence was required, whereas in the cases charge sheeted by the EOW against the directors of the company there were no allegations that violence or threat was used by the accused persons.
In its complaint, the association has submitted that "in the year 2010, the accused persons formed a gang and hatched a conspiracy with their common criminal intent to cheat the hard-earned money of general public on the pretext of allotment of office spaces, shops/commercial spaces, residential apartments, etc. through accused number 9 [M/s Earth Infrastructure Ltd.] and its associates/ subsidiaries companies/sister Concerns".
The association said that despite receiving thousands of crores of rupees from the buyers, the company has not handed over any of the projects and "misappropriated the funds".
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