Top builders used dummy buy­ers to get cheap bank loans

Af­ter DeMo they stopped pay­ing EMIs; loan-tak­ers pushed to sui­cide

DNA (Delhi) - - DNA - Dipu Rai dipu.rai@dnain­

New Delhi: De­mon­eti­sa­tion has un­rav­eled a deeply fraud­u­lent loan prac­tice that ex­isted in the real es­tate sec­tor wherein builders, in col­lu­sion with banks, got in­di­vid­u­als to take loans pos­ing as buy­ers (home loans to pri­vate in­di­vid­u­als come at a cheaper in­ter­est rate), and there­after chan­nel­ing the dis­bursed amount into their busi­nesses.

The modus operandi goes like this: Mo­hit Sax­ena (31), fa­ther of an in­fant, ur­gently needed money in 2015. He owed nu­mer­ous loans for his mother’s treat­ment, his sis­ter’s and his own mar­riages. Two agents, Nan­dan Jha and Ajay, of a par­tic­u­lar builder came to Mo­hit with a pro­posal to ob­tain a bank loan for them, promis­ing Mo­hit 4-6 per cent ‘cut’ on the to­tal dis­bursed amount. The EMIs were to be paid to the bank by the builder, but through Mo­hit, the of­fi­cial loan-taker.

To Mo­hit’s sur­prise, the builder cre­ated three loan files in­stead of one. Out of greed, he signed the loan doc­u­ments. The agents as­sured him that the loan is go­ing to be re­paid in two years flat. So, Mo­hit went ahead with three home loans to­talling to Rs 1.5 crore, the EMI for which was Rs 1.5 lakh a month. Mo­hit’s monthly salary is Rs 50,000 and his wife, then work­ing, is now with­out a job.

Within a few months, Mo­hit started get­ting calls from the bank as the builder had stopped pay­ing the EMIs. Caught in a ter­ri­ble debt trap, Mo­hit at­tempted sui­cide twice. “First, I tried to jump be­fore a Metro train, but a fel­low trav­eller pulled me back. Af­ter that I tried to hang my­self,” he said. “Af­ter de­mon­eti­sa­tion, the builder has stopped pay­ing the EMIs for all the three loans… loans which are in my name. I don’t know what is go­ing to hap­pen now and how could I pos­si­bly re­pay a Rs 1.5-crore loan with a monthly salary of Rs 50,000.”

Banks give loans to builders at an av­er­age in­ter­est rate of 14-18 per cent, while pri­vate eq­uity fund­ing charges 20-25 per cent. Hence, builders had re­sorted to the fraud­u­lent prac­tice of us­ing ‘ghost’ home-buy­ers to get loans on their be­half, promis­ing them a per­cent­age of the dis­bursed amount and as­sur­ing that EMIs will be taken care of.

“There are 70-80 vic­tims like me in the same project of JSS Build­con,” Mo­hit re­vealed. Ritesh Sharma, an­other ‘ghost’ buyer, claimed: “Al­most all builders in­dulge in such loan-pack­ag­ing fraud”.

Around 95 builders, in­clud­ing Am­ra­pali, ATS, Su­pertech, Shubhkamna, JSS Build­con, Unitech and Omaxe were on Greater Noida Au­thor­ity’s de­faulter list as on July 2017. Sources said that most builders had used ghost buy­ers. Sharma said, “Let’s au­dit the fi­nances of each and ev­ery project, and es­pe­cially those who de­faulted with the au­thor­i­ties”.

Vice-chair­man of Na­tional Real Es­tate De­vel­op­ment Coun­cil (NAREDCO) Parveen Jain, said, “If ghost buyer thing is go­ing on, then a proper ver­i­fi­ca­tion pro­ce­dure should be in place so that this thing does not hap­pen. In to­day’s sce­nario, it seems very dif­fi­cult for such a thing to hap­pen be­cause of fool-proof iden­tity sys­tems pre­vail­ing… un­til and un­less the par­ties in­volved are hand-in-glove. Also, the ghost buy­ers should not fall for this be­cause if the de­vel­oper aban­dons them mid­way, the ul­ti­mate suf­fer­ers shall be the ghost buy­ers them­selves.”

Af­ter de­mon­eti­sa­tion, the builder has stopped pay­ing the EMIs on loans which are in my name. I don’t know how I can re­pay a Rs 1.5-crore loan

—Mo­hit, a ‘ghost’ buyer

If ghost buyer thing is go­ing on, then a proper ver­i­fi­ca­tion pro­ce­dure should be in place so that this thing does not hap­pen

—Parveen Jain,


Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.