The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission directed a Sahara Group company to refund over Rs 1.43 crore to a home buyer for not giving them possession of a bungalow near Nagpur, PTI reported. The commission is the apex consumer body in the country.

The NCDRC held Sahara Prime City Ltd “deficient” in rendering services to the complainant Sadhana, a native of Maharashtra, who failed to get possession of the bungalow in the Sahara City Homes project despite paying the full amount.

While pronouncing its judgement, the consumer body said that there was “no evidence of the possession having been delayed on account of reasons and circumstances beyond the control of SPLC, and thus the SPLC had been deficient in providing services”. It said that the complainant cannot be forced to keep waiting for the property, and hence must immediately be refunded the full amount.

Sadhana said she had booked a residential bungalow in Sahara’s Nagpur-based housing project for Rs 1,43,56,000 and an allotment letter was issued by the firm on March 2, 2009. The possession of the bungalow was to be delivered within 38 months of the date of allotment – that is, by May 2, 2012. However, SPCL not only did not deliver the possession, but also failed to finish the construction of the bungalow.

SPCL also did not reply within 45 days from the date on which they were served a notice by the consumer body. Therefore, NCRDC held that the firm’s right to a written reply was closed. It also directed SPCL to pay Rs 10,000 as litigation cost to the complainant.