Worldlink News Bureau: The Supreme Court has ordered the demolition of two 40-storey buildings – Apex and Ceyane Towers – that are part of the Emerald Court housing project in Noida’s Sector 93A.
The court said that the demolition will be carried out within three months and the cost of demolition will be borne by the builder, Supertech.
The two towers comprise over a thousand flats and were declared illegal by the Allahabad High Court in 2017.
A bench of Justice D Y Chandrachud and M R Shah held that the twin towers, built by Supertech, were illegal and had been constructed in collusion with authorities in Noida.
The bench also ruled that these towers had been built in violation of the distance requirement between two towers.
The court also slammed the Noida Authority for its nexus with the builder and said, “The rampant increase of unauthorised construction in urban areas has been noticed in the last many years.
This state of affairs has come because of collusion between authorities and builders, and it strikes at the very core of urban planning.”
“The record of this case is replete with instances of nefarious complicity between Noida Authority and the builder,” the court added.
Protecting the interest of buyers, who had purchased flats in these twin towers, the court said, “The builder shall refund the money of all buyers with 12 per cent (interest)”.
Expressing its concern at such illegal constructions, the court held that it is the home buyer who has to bear the brunt of such illegality, and because of such constructions, the quality of life of the buyers suffers the most.
The court said that the demolition will be carried out under the supervision of the Central Building Research Institute (CBRI), Roorkee.
Supertech’s original plan provided for 550 flats and 14 towers. This was increased to 689 flats in the revised plan in December 2006. The Apex and Ceyane towers with 24 floors, came in the third revised plan of November 2009. And in the final plan of March 2012, these two towers were increased from 24 to 40 storeys.
The top court judgment comes on an appeal filed by Supertech against the Allahabad High Court 2017 order directing demolition of the twin towers.
The High Court had ordered the demolition of the two towers because they were built too close to each other and violated the Noida Building Regulations of 2010 that requires the minimum distance to be 16 metres. This is the second time in the last two years that the Supreme Court has taken a serious view of illegal construction.
In May 2019, the court had ordered the demolition of four residential buildings, comprising around 400 flats built on the coastal zone of Kochi’s Maradu area, and directed the Kerala government to disburse Rs 25 lakh each as interim compensation to each of the homeowners within four weeks.