Home Dehradun Police lacking will to nab fraudster despite HC orders

Police lacking will to nab fraudster despite HC orders

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Orchid Park Buyers fail to get relief from RERA

By Arun Pratap Singh

Dehradun, 8 Aug: Over 90 persons, who had paid money to buy flats in the Orchid Park project of

Pushpanjali Realms & Infratech Ltd, have failed to get any relief from the system or the Uttarakhand Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) despite the High Court directives in this regard. Not only this, the police officers also seem to lack any will to nab the “culprits” in the case and seem to be deliberately ignoring the High Court orders.

It was in the month of March this year when the buyers had called on RERA officials but had failed to get any specific assurances for action against the realtors. Following this, they were forced to hold a dharna outside the office of Uttarakhand Real Estate Regulatory Authority against the continued inaction against the promoters of the project.

It may be recalled that the Orchid Park Project was abandoned midway in 2018. According to the buyers, the promoters owe an amount of over Rs 70 crores to them, since neither the flats have been constructed nor the money returned.

Yesterday, a delegation of the buyers had called on Director General of Police (DGP) Ashok Kumar to seek the promoters’ arrest. The buyers claimed that the DGP promised action within the next few days but they are not convinced. They believe that the police officials have taken no interest to locate the realtors who are busy with other projects. The police have not been able to trace them.

On the other hand, speaking to Garhwal Post, DGP Ashok Kumar said that the buyers had called on him seeking arrest of the realtors concerned and assured this correspondent early action in this regard.

On 12 June, 2023, while hearing the case, Justice Ravindra Maithani of Nainital High Court in his order had asked whether the authorities were hand in glove with the culprits. He had even directed SSP Dehradun to ensure action and to consider transfer of the case to some other officers in order to ensure action.

It may be recalled that Garhwal Post had reported this fraud through a special report published on 11 July, 2020, and then again on 28 March this year. Despite this, the RERA as well as the police have failed to take any concrete action against the promoters. The project has three promoters, namely Deepak Mittal, his wife Rakhi Mittal, and Rajpal Walia, who are the directors of the real estate company. The real estate project is located at Canal Road, off Rajpur Road.

In this case, money was taken from people for flats but these were not provided. Only the basic structure was partially erected in one block, while only the foundation was dug in the case of several blocks. Since then, there has been no progress. Deepak Mittal and his wife Rakhi Mittal have reportedly relocated to Dubai. The police had then claimed that they are trying to get them back to India. However, the accused have been seen in Nainital during a hearing. Though, officially, they continue to be underground but have been seen also in Bangalore by one of the buyers.

Director Rajpal Walia lays all the blame on Deepak Mittal for the fraud, but the buyers claim that he is equally involved.

It may further be recalled that the then DIG, Arun Mohan Joshi, had constituted an SIT under the supervision of then Dalanwala, CO, Vivek Kumar. This SIT had pursued the investigation. The case had made some progress then and the police had also made some sincere attempt to bring back Deepak Mittal to India by issuing summons to him but it did not succeed. Meanwhile, it is learnt that Mittal had also opened an escrow account and asked certain buyers to deposit some money in that account so that the construction could begin. However, while there were withdrawals of the funds from that account, no progress was made to begin the construction.

Initially, Rajpal Walia had claimed that he was not involved in the escrow account and also alleged that Mittal had cheated him too. However, sources claim that the SIT inquiry had revealed his involvement also in the operation of that escrow account and withdrawal of funds.

The Gangster Act has been invoked against the three directors, Deepak Mittal, Rakhi Mittal and Rajpal Walia. The process is underway to confiscate their properties. But, in reality, no action seems to have been taken against them. Police officials unofficially state that the three directors claim to have no properties in their names which could be confiscated. It may also be recalled that Mittals and Walia are also the promoters of the famous Canyon Club project in Rajpur, in which high profile elites of the city were made members by charging high premiums. It is also learnt that some senior bureaucrats and police officers were also members of this club, and their membership was granted to them due to their positions.

The aggrieved buyers have been seeking justice for four long years, running to RERA and higher authorities, only to receive false assurances and no concrete results. In one case, RERA has even given a judgement in favour of one buyer but there has been no implementation of the order. RERA has ignored the buyers’ plea to implement Section 8, which could have led to the completion of the project and given the buyers their homes.