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Defaulters can’t seek enforcement of fundamental rights: Supreme Court

LiveMint logoLiveMint 01-05-2017 PTI

New Delhi: Defaulters cannot be allowed to approach the Supreme Court to get their fundamental rights against the government and authorities, the apex court said on Monday while refusing to entertain a petition filed by embattled real estate company Unitech Ltd.

Unitech had filed a plea in Supreme Court under Article 32 of the Constitution (for protection of fundamental rights) seeking apex court’s directive to Telangana State Industrial Infrastructure Corp. for the release of over Rs165 crore pending with the state government authority.

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“We cannot entertain a defaulter or grant him indulgence under Article 32 of the Constitution. We are not going to interfere with Article 32. You better move the High Court for the relief under Article 226 of the Constitution,” a bench headed by justice Dipak Misra said.

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Unitech, said the firm did not have money to pay the flat buyers, adding that is directions are issued to Telangana Industrial Infrastructure Corp. to refund the amount, then it would be of great help.

Sibal said if Unitech moved the Hyderabad high court, it would consume lot of time, and the company would fail to meet the Supreme Court’s 8 May deadline to refund the flat buyers.

“We cannot collect money for you (Unitech). You have to pay the flat buyers for delayed possession. It’s our order and we know how to execute our orders,” said the Supreme Court bench.

The apex court, however, granted permission to withdraw the petition and clarified that it has not expressed any view on the merit of the case.

The Supreme Court had on 24 April directed Unitech to deposit 14% interest on Rs16.55 crore invested by 39 home buyers at its project in Gurgaon by 8 May, with a warning that failure to do so could invite attaching of the realtor’s property Unitech Residential Resorts. The firm wouldn’t also get more time to hand over the flats to the 39 buyers that booked flats in Unitech’s Vista housing project in Gurgaon.

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