New Delhi, October 21, 2021: While finding that no prima facie competition case existed for causing investigation into the individual dispute matter, the Competition Commission of India (CCI) has directed to close the information filed u/s 26(2) of Competition Act, 2002.
The Coram of Ashok Kumar Gupta (Chairperson), Sangeeta Verma (Member) & Bhagwant Singh Bishnoi (Member), therefore observed that non-handing over of an allotted residential plot by a government body due to disputed facts, are in the nature of an individual civil dispute, rather being a competition issue.
The background of the case was that Mohammad Gayoor Haider (informant) filed present information u/s 19(1)(a) against Ghaziabad Development Authority (OP-1) and State of UP (OP-2), alleging contravention of provisions of the Act, 2002.
It was stated that the informant was allegedly allotted an apartment by OP-1 as per the residential scheme, which was later on cancelled and the informant was offered a refund of his money paid till date with an interest @5% p.a. or choice to apply under any new scheme floated by OP-1.
In 1996, the informant applied for alternative allotment under OP-1’s new scheme rather than taking his money back. Subsequently, the informant came to know that despite being allotted the plot, it was not handed over to him.
Till date neither was the informant allotted the apartment nor given refund. Accordingly, the informant filed the present Information praying CCI to pass an order in his favour for possession of the plot and injunction against OPs, restraining them from transferring/creating/mortgaging the plot.
After considering the submissions, the Coram stated that present matter pertained to allegations of non-handing over of an allotted residential plot by OP-1 to Informant. No specific allegations were made against OP-2.
Facts and allegations made in present Information were highly disputed and were essentially in nature of an individual civil dispute between informant and OP-1 rather than revealing any competition issue, added the Coram.
“Informant seemed to be averring that he came to know of allotment in his favour only in year 2020 through means of filing an application under provisions of Right to Information Act, 2005. In 2013, he had filed a writ petition against OP-1 before HC, seeking refund of his money, which was dismissed on grounds of delay and laches as well as non-production of original receipts by Informant. Apart from 2013 writ petition, it was not clear as to what other steps were taken by Informant till 2020 to enforce his rights against OP-1”, observed the Coram.
Therefore, finding that there was nothing on record wherefrom even a prima facie case of contravention of any of the provisions of the Competition Act could be made out against either OP-1 and/or OP-2 in present matter, the Commission ordered the Information to be closed forthwith in terms of provisions u/s 26(2).