10 Yrs On, Dhauli Heights Flat Owners Yet To Get Possession, Real Estate News, ET RealEstate

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By Amit

BHUBANESWAR: Ten years after Odisha Cooperative Housing Corporation (OCHC) floated Dhauli Heights, a housing project in Tamando area on the city’s outskirts, the trouble for homebuyers is far from over as they wait to get their hands on the keys to their flats.

The OCHC had started the housing project in 2013 on public-private-partnership mode and allotted the flats through a lottery system to nearly 40 home buyers.

The project was supposed to be completed in 2016, however, funds crunch and litigation problems with a private partner, saw the project get stuck. The OCHC removed the partner and then showed its inability to complete the project, making it difficult for the buyers.

“We have been waiting for more than seven years, having invested our hard-earned money on the flat. We are still to get what is rightfully ours. The authorities have been citing one reason after another and we have been waiting patiently. So many years have passed and we do not know when we will get our houses,” said N Siva Kumar, one of the buyers.

The buyers had approached the Odisha Real Estate Regulatory Authority (ORERA), which had issued an order asking OCHC to compensate the buyers and hand over the houses by 2019.

But the corporation showed further inability in making the payments, citing funds crunch. In 2019, the matter was raised in the assembly when then corporation minister Ranendra Pratap Swain had admitted the issue with funds crunch and had assured the homebuyers that they will get their flats by the end of that year.

But that deadline also passed and the matter was raised again in 2021 in the assembly. Once again, Swain assured that the orders of the ORERA to compensate the buyers would be followed and that the allottees will get their flats by December 2022.

“A house is always a dream for the middle class. I have put all my hard-earned money to buy the house. I am tired now of asking about its status. Now I want my money back,” said N K Naik, a disgruntled buyer.

In the meantime, the Odisha Police Welfare Housing Corporation (OPWHC) was roped in to finish the project, which has neared 95% completion, but finishing work remain due to non-payment of dues.

OCHC managing director Kulamani Padhi said formalities have been completed and the allottees will get their flats by March. “There were certain funds crunch issue, which are being dealt with. We are working on it and the houses will be handed over to the owners by March this year,” Padhi said.

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