When you talk about equities, people usually get up and say ‘Real estate gives better returns’…I bought a house in Kharghar for Rs. 20L and now in 10 years it is worth Rs. 3 crores or some such numbers are thrown.
Not that I try to defend equity as an investment (my returns do not depend on how many investors are there in the world), and frankly it does not matter to me. However I have always thought of RE as a risky investment and have been wary of the paper work.
Here is the saga of a RE investor (sure if you buy a flat in a city the risks are different, but this is worth reading)
This has been written by a famous fund manager…I have just reproduced it here. If anybody can help, please comment and I will pass on the contacts…
TRAVAILS OF MY FATHER IN LAW IN HARYANA GOONDA RAAJ
(Request everyone to read,share & if anyone can be of help it will be appreciated)
The magnitude of land scams that are on in the state of Haryana are unimaginable for most people who have not bought land in that state or some of us who stay in cities and deal with Urban properties. It seems that there is a total involvement of everyone from the top to bottom in this scam where the same properties are sold off to different people or someone else’s property is sold off by another person despite there being sufficient safeguards to prevent this.
The entire episode starts with a group of Fraudsters by the names of Balbir Chand, Iqbal Singh and Om Prakash and his group approaching my Father In Law (FIL) that there is a piece of land available for sale near Panchkula near a place by the name of Ramgarh in the year 2005. This was a piece of land measuring 26 acres situated in Village Kot Billa and they convinced him that this was available very cheap and he put his own money amounting to Rs 60 Lakhs and Rs 40 Lakhs of another relative and bought this land measuring 26 Acres for a sum of Rs 1 Cr. The land bought by him was registered in his name. This land ultimately turned out to be that of Golden Forest ( a defunct ponzy scheme which ran in India in early 1990’s ) which was a defaulter and all their property was attached by means of a Supreme Court order and could not be sold by anyone. When my FIL approached the Tehsildar for mutation of the land he was told that this property could not be transferred due to the SC order. The Tehsildar Panchkula, who had changed by that time also confirmed that the property could not be bought at the time when the purchase was made. It was after a period of 2 months he realized that this was a fraud and he was sold land which could not be sold & corrupt local authorities in connivance with Om Prakash had taken him for a ride.
After this my FIL was after the property dealer Om Prakash for around 6 months to return the money. He was then told that they do not have the money but they will give him land instead. He showed my FIL several pieces of land which were all disputed. Ultimately in the year 2009 a clean piece of land was found near a place by the name of Shahabad. He told my FIL that for this he will need to give him another Rs 40 lakhs and Rs 12 lakhs for registration and on doing that he will be given this piece of land near Shahabad near Kurukshetra measuring about 14 acres. In desperation to recover his money he paid up this money without informing any of us. This person by the name of Om Prakash asked my FIL to give him the registration stamp papers and come for the registry at Thanesar the next day, he also got the sale deed approved. However when my FIL and my Mother In Law reached the Tehsildar office the next day this person in connivance with the Tehsildar of that place had already got the sale deed executed using the stamp papers purchased by my FIL. He had registered 10.5 acres of land in the name of some lady by the name of Joginder Kaur and 3 acres in my Mother In Laws name. They were angry on this, however given the prevailing land prices they realized that even 3 acres might be enough for them to recover the money and as such let the issue be. The original Sale deeds of the entire 14 acres however came in their possession and he got the mutation too done at the Tehsil office and as such they were satisfied that no one can do another fraud against them.
However this was just the start of their travails. In February 2013 they got a call from some person who belonged to Shahabad asking them whether my FIL had sold off his piece of land. When he replied in the negative, this person told my FIL that all the land has been sold off and my Mother In Law was present at the time of the sale and registration in the name of the same Joginder Kaur who had further sold off the land to some people from Delhi. My In Laws immediately rushed to the Tehsil office in Shahabad and realized that the land was sold. Some lady by the name of Anita was presented as my Mother IN Law in active connivance with the Tehsildar office, who had no similarity with my Mother in Law and despite the original papers being in possession of my In-laws. By this time they had invested a total of Rs 1.52 Cr and fraud had been done against them twice already.
At this time they said that enough is enough and filed a complaint against the entire group of people in May/June of 2013. However this group had so much influence that it took nearly couple of months and several trips for converting the complaint into an FIR. At this point of time the entire group went underground and the police was unable to locate any of the accused till February 2014. The rumours we heard were that enough money had been paid to local police, officers etc and the group had the blessings of the ruling political class.
Ultimately the case was transferred to the Crime Branch at the behest of the accused themselves as he had good relations with the ADGP crime of that time. However to his surprise the Special Investigation Team (SIT) that was formed had all honest officers. The IG Police and Inspector in charge at this stage turned out to be upright officers and worked hard on the case. The lady who impersonated my MIL was found to have been murdered by the accused. The accused then got the case transferred back to Haryana Police to police station Shahabad as the Crime Branch refused to act at their behest. At this stage my FIL approached the Punjab & Haryana High Court to stop the transfer of case. The High Court passed orders that the case will not be transferred and investigated by the Crime Branch. At this stage the police arrested a woman accomplice by the name of Joginder Kaur and then the entire group of men who were involved in the fraud were arrested while trying to flee Haryana on the Haryana/UP border.
However this was not the end of the story. Despite the High Court order the powerful group of accused has over the last few days got their case transferred back to the Police (which has been rumoured to be paid Rs 1 Cr to finish off the case). Two days back a lady has filed a rape case against my old FIL who cannot even walk without crutches at a place called Siwan at the behest of these powerful fraudsters. Not only that it can be easily proved from witnesses and call records that on the days of the accusation he was at his office or residence in Panchkula. The person who has lost his entire life savings is being forced to run from pillar to post to get justice while the criminals are having a good time doing rampant frauds in the state of Haryana. Is this possible without active political support and payoffs? My guess is NO. This land which should have been my FIL’s is today valued at Rs 21 Cr and he is actually poorer by Rs 1.52 Cr plus all legal costs that he has had to incur.
I call for others who have been victims of such frauds in Haryana state to come forward. I also call for everyone to share this post and my friends in Media to take up this cause for justice and to stop this rampant land fraud in Haryana. What is the voice of a handicapped, 72 year old. Is Justice only in the textbooks? When will this Ravan raaj end? I call for help from anyone who can.
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