Pujit Aggarwal, MD & CEO of Mumbai-based real estate developer Orbit Corporation has been arrested by the Azad Maidan police in a cheating case. He has been remanded to police custody until the 12th of September which is now extended to 16th September.
The complainant – Capri Global Capital Limited, has accused Orbit Corporation of pocketing about Rs 2.5 crores that had been invested to purchase 3 flats in the company’s Orbit Residency Park project in Andheri. A spokesperson from Capri Global Capital claimed that orbit Corporation had not deposited the money in an escrow account with HDFC bank as it should have.
“The project was mortgaged with LIC Housing Finance and was subsequently taken over by them for non-payment of dues. As a result, our right as investors was derecognized,” said the company spokesperson.
The complaint was initially registered with the Azad Maidan police under section 420 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC). This was then changed to include sections 406, 120(B) of the IPC and sections 3, 4 and 5 of the Maharashtra Ownership Of Flats Act (MOFA).
This is the latest in a string of problems that has plagued Orbit Corporation over the past few years. A listed company and once regarded as one of the more reputed developers in the city, with several high-end, luxury projects in South Mumbai – the company has been struggling to pay off its debts and complete its projects. Marquee projects like Orbit Residency Park in Andheri and Orbit Terraces in Lower Parel have been taken over by lenders for non-payment of dues.
Orbit Corporation’s spokespeople were unavailable for comment. However, when NDTV met with Pujit Aggarwal in June, he had stated that his company was in talks with lenders to settle its debt and that he intends to restart construction in the next couple of months. Pujit also stated he had found an investor who was willing to buy the delayed units from customers who wanted to exit the project. But since this was to happen at less than market rates, most customers were unwilling to take up the offer.
Since then, home buyers of Orbit Residency Park have filed FIRs against Orbit Corporation and its directors for the delay in delivery of the project.