Mumbai: Neumec, IDFC & residents trade charges over Kalina plot takeover – ET RealEstate

MUMBAI: When IDFC First Bank took token possession of a Kalina plot last month after the builder defaulted on a loan, it set the cat among pigeons. Evergreen Heights Residential Society, which occupies the under-one-acre plot next to the Forensic Science Laboratory, complained to the CM, alleging a “major land scam”.

Society members said the builder -Neumec Group -did not own the land and had wrongly mortgaged the property to the bank. They said the owners comprised MMRDA, PWD, Wadia Trust and two private owners. The CM’s office directed the urban development department to investigate. On Monday, society members were called for a hearing by the Slum Rehabilitation Authority.

“IDFC First Bank has fraudulently given a loan against land parcels represented by our society and, on default of repayment, issued a possession notice. How could the builder, who is seeking to redevelop the property under the SRA, mortgage our plots without our knowledge and consent?” the society said in its complaint to the CM.

The builder, in turn, accused the bank, saying its “coercive action” created panic among the 350 slum families who are waiting to be rehabilitated.

IDFC First Bank, in a statement to TOI, said, “The allegations by the society are false and baseless. The mortgage of the Kalina property was created, inter alia, on the basis of title search reports and various representations and warranties of the mortgagor in the mortgaged deed.” The bank said due to defaults by the borrowers, it had taken various legal actions. It said only when action was taken under the SARFAESI Act that the matter was brought to its notice by a certain Anthony.

“However, we have not received any legal documents that support his claim to the property or from any other entity or authority. The bank will take appropriate measures if the title of the Kalina property is conclusively found to be defective,” it added. The principal loan outstanding of the builder is approximately Rs 32 crore.

Builders Rajesh Jain and Nilesh Gunjal of Neumec Group said only 3,000 sq m of the larger slum pocket of 2.5 acres in Kalina was mortgaged as an additional guarantee for its project in Mumbai Central. “This 3,000 sq m belongs to us,” said Jain. After IDFC took token possession of the property, Neumec wrote to the bank stating the unsold flats in Crescent Aria project (Mumbai Central) were valued at over Rs100 crore. “We are surprised you are not proceeding against the said unsold flats. Time and again we had requested you to sell and/or dispose of the unsold flats in the project as provided under the consent terms dated March 20.

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