19th June, 2016, Mumbai: Welcome to RNA Exotica, a premium building project by Skyline Construction Co, where deadlines keep slipping and the number of flats to be constructed keeps shrinking year after year. The number of flats to be constructed has dropped by at least 80 since March 2011, and project completion date has slipped by six years. (Yes, you read that right -- six whole years!) Further shrinkage and slippage is definitely forecast. Also, visible manipulation of official facts and figures should make investors wonder what is going on behind the scenes.
The gory details:
- In Axis Bank's first mortgage deed registered in March 2011, RNA Exotica's project completion date was mentioned as September 2012. Given the amount of work that had to be completed within 18 months by Skyline Construction Co, the deadline was obviously a bare-faced lie. Axis Bank's first loan to RNA's Skyline Construction Co for the project was of Rs 75 crore. At that time, 459 flats were to be constructed i.e. 30 floors of 16 flats each, plus 11 floors of common amenities such as parking etc. Unsold flats and future receivables of RNA Exotica were offered as mortgage. The number of sold flats was mentioned as being 168 (2,41,350 sq. ft.), and purchasers' names and flat numbers were mentioned in tabular form.
- In March 2013, Skyline got the mortgage released and immediately took a fresh loan of Rs 100 crore from Axis Bank for the same project. In the second mortgage deed registered in March 2013, the project completion date mentioned is March 2016 -- which turned out to be another lie, causing anxiety and financial distress to many of the investors. In the 2013 mortgage deed, the project parameters changed quite dramatically. The total number of flats to be built in RNA Exotica were reduced by 35 (i.e. height reduction of two or three floors), and the number of sold flats miraculously dropped down to 66 (94,951 sq. ft.) only. (How? Did RNA Corp buy back 102 flats during two years?) Particulars of sold and unsold flats were not mentioned in this mortgage deed.
- After a meeting with angry investors on 5th May 2016, RNA Corp issued a statement signed by some unnamed spokesperson, that flats' possession will be given in December 2017. Judging from the recent progress of RNA Exotica's construction, this also is a lie. Also, further reduction of the building's height is a high probability. According to MMRDA sources, the sanctioned number of floors currently is 11+21 floors. Will it go up to 25 floors? Possibly, but not necessarily. This height reduction reflects in registered agreements. Producer Kushan Pritish Nandy's flat purchase agreement registered in 2014 said 30 upper floors. Actor Arif Zakaria's purchase agreement registered in August 2015 said 25 upper floors. Reduction of even five floors (30 minus 5) means approximately 80 flats less than earlier planned, and the top floor would be the 36th floor (11 plus 25). So what will happen to sale-purchase agreements registered for flats on 40th floor etc?
Many twists and turns lie ahead. Dekhte rahye iss dhaaravahik ki UGLY kadee!
(Deep gratitude and appreciation to Sulaiman Bhimani (9323642081) for tracking this case over the past six years, digging up documents and interviewing sources.)
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