1. What is this enhancement fee for?
In 1990, 631 acres of land from three villages — Ghata, Wazirabad and Haiderpur Viran —were acquired by Huda to build sectors 55 and 56. It allotted the land for 48 group housing societies (GHS-90) in 1993. In 1996, the land owners approached a local court, which increased the compensation. In 1998, another group housing society scheme (GHS-98) was floated. Notices have been sent out to flat owners to claim the dues that accrued because of the higher compensation paid to land owners. Interest for all these years has been charged as well. The urban development authority says the enhancement was not included in the allotment charges for GHS-98.
2. When were the notices sent?
In 2016, GHS-98 societies got enhancement notices, which included interest. In June 2021, the societies again received notices that if the dues are not cleared, sale and purchase will be banned and amenities will be cut off.
3. How much does a flat owner have to pay?
The average enhancement, after adding interest, works out to Rs 3.5 lakh to Rs 4 lakh per flat. The government has served notices to a total of 52 group housing societies. The amount it intends to collect as enhancement fee and interest is around Rs 200 crore.
4. Why were the notices challenged?
Through a Right to Information plea, residents’ associations found that the allotment price for GHS-98 had seen a major increase because of additional government charges of Rs 612 per sqm, which included Rs 500 as development charges. Residents’ groups contend no such charges were levied on allottees of GHS-90 and also question the logic of asking them to pay development charges twice, saying development charges were part of the allotment price anyway. Their other contention is that land for rural dairy zones, housing board and roads and parks was not excluded from the calculations, as it ought to have been.
5. What is the government’s argument?
The government says the cost of the land was originally conveyed to the societies by the Huda chief administrator through a letter of intent (1999) for allotment, and that the chief administrator’s office later conveyed that the rate of allotment did not include any enhancement. Which is why it is now recoverable from allottees in sectors 55-56 in accordance with regulations of Haryana Urban Development (disposal of land and building) Regulation Act 1978.