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DELHI APARTMENT OWNERSHIP ACT

Ministry of Law and Justice

Act nº 58 of 1986


  • Chapter I
  • Chapter II
  • Chapter III
  • Chapter IV
  • Chapter V
  • Chapter VI
  • Act nº 58 of 1986

Preamble

THE DELHI APARTMENT OWNERSHIP ACT, 1986

[Act, No. 58 of 1986]

[23rd December, 1986]

PREAMBLE

An Act to provide for the ownership of an individual apartment in a multi-storeyed building and of an undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant to such apartment and to make such apartment and interest heritable and transferable and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto.

WHEREAS with a view to securing that the ownership and control of the material resources of the community are so distributed as to sub-serve the common good, it is expedient to provide for the ownership of an individual apartment in a multi-storeyed building and of an undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant to such apartment, and to make such apartment and interest heritable and transferable and to provide for matters connected therewith or incidental therefore

BE it enacted by Parliament in the Thirty-seventh Year of the Republic of India as follows:--

Chapter I

Section 1. Short title, extent and commencement

(1) This Act may be called the Delhi Apartment Ownership Act, 1986.

(2) It extends to the whole of the Union territory of Delhi.

(3) It shall come into force on such date1as the Administrator may, by notification in the Official Gazette, appoint.

1. 11.10.1987


Section 2. Application

The provisions of this Act shall apply to every apartment in a multistoreyed building which was constructed mainly for residential or commercial or such other purposes as may be prescribed, by--

(a) any group housing co-operative society; or

(b) any other person or authority, before or after the commencement of this Act and on a free hold land or a lease hold land if the lease for such land is for a period of thirty years or more:

Provided that where a building constructed, whether before or after the commencement of this Act, on any land contains only two or three apartments, the owner of such building may, by a declaration duly executed and registered under the provisions of the Registration Act, 1908, 16 of 1908 indicate his intention to make the provisions of this Act applicable to such building, and on such declaration being made, such owner shall execute and register a Deed of Apartment in accordance with the provisions of this Act, as if such owner were the promoter in relation to such building.

Section 3. In this Act, unless the context otherwise requires,

(a) "Administrator?means the Administrator of the Union territory of Delhi appointed by the President under article 239 of the Constitution;

(b) "allottee? in relation to an apartment, means the person to whom such apartment has been allotted, sold or otherwise transferred by the promoter;

(c) "apartment?means a part of any property, intended for any type of independent use, including one or more rooms or enclosed spaces located on one or more floors or any parts thereof, in a multi-storeyed building to be used for residence or office or for the practice of any profession, or for the carrying on of any occupation, trade or business or for such other type of independent use as may be prescribed, and with a direct exist to a public street, road or highway, or to a common area leading to such street, road or highway, and includes any garage or room (whether or not adjacent to the multi-storeyed building in which such apartment is located) provided by the promoter for use by the owner of such apartment for parking any vehicle or, as the case may be, for the residence of any domestic aide employed in such apartment;

(d) "apartment number?means the number, letter or combination thereof, designating an apartment;

(e) "apartment owner?means the person or person owning an apartment and an undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant to such apartment in the percentage specified in the Deed of Apartment;

(f) "Association of Apartment Owners?--

(i) in relation to a multi-storeyed building not falling within Sub-clause (ii), means all the owners of the apartments therein;

(ii) in the case of the multi-storeyed buildings in any area, designated as a block, pocket or otherwise, means all the owners of the apartments in such block, pocket or other designated area, acting as a group in accordance with the bye-laws;

(g) "authority" includes any authority constituted or established by or under any law for the time being in force;

(h) "Board" means the Board of Management of an Association of Apartment Owners elected by its members under the bye-laws;

(i) "bye-laws" means the bye-laws made under this Act;

(j) "common areas and facilities" in relatin to a multi-storeyed building, means--

(i) the land on which such building is located and all easements, rights and appurtenances belonging to the land and the building;

(ii) the foundations, columns, girders, beams, supports, main walls, roofs, halls, corridors, lobbies, stairs, stairways, fire-escapes and entrances and exits of the building;

(iii) the basements cellars, yards, gardens, parking areas, shopping centres, schools and storage spaces;

(iv) the premises for the lodging of janitors or persons employed for the management of the property;

(v) installations of central services, such as, power, light, gas, hot and cold water, heating, refrigeration, air conditioning, incinerating and sewerage;

(vi) the elevators, tanks, pumps, motors, fans, compressors, ducts and in general all apparatus and installations existing for common use;

(vii) all other parts of the property necessary or convenient to its existence, maintenance and safety, or normally in common use;

(k) "common expenses" means--

(i) all sums lawfully assessed against the apartment owners by the Association of Apartment Owners for meeting the expenses of administration, maintenance, repair or replacement of the common areas and facilities;

(ii) expenses declared as common expenses by the provisions of this Act or by the bye-laws, or agreed by the Association of Apartment Owners;

(l) "common profits" means the balance of all income, rents, profits and revenues from the common areas and facilities remaining after the deduction of the common expenses;

(m) "competent authority" means,--

(i) a Secretary in the Delhi Administration, or

(ii) the Vice-Chairman of the Delhi Development Authority, or

(iii) the Land and Development Officer of the Central Government,

who may be authorised by the Administrator, by notification in the Official Gazette, to perform the functions of the competent authority under this Act;

(n) "Deed of Apartment" means the Deed of Apartment referred to in section 13;

(o) "Delhi" means the Union territory of Delhi;

(p) "joint family" means a Hindu undivided family, and in the case of other persons, a group or unit, the members of which are by custom, joint in possession or residence;

(q) "limited common areas" and facilities?means those common areas and facilities which are designated in writing by the promoter before the allotment, sale or other transfer of any apartment as reserved for use of certain apartment or apartments to the exclusion of the other apartments;

(r) "Manager" means the Manager of an Association of Apartment Owners appointed under the bye-laws;

(s) "multi-storeyed building" means a building constructed on any land, containing four or more apartments, or two or more buildings in any area designated as a block, pocket or otherwise, each containing two or more apartments, with a total of four or more apartments in all such buildings, and includes a building containing two or three apartments in respect of which a declaration has been made under the proviso to section 2;

(t) "owner" in relation to an apartment, includes, for the purpose of this Act, a lessee of the land on which the building containing such apartment has been constructed, where the lease of such land is for a period of thirty years or more;

(u) "person" includes a firm and a joint family, and also includes a group housing co-operative society;

(v) "prescribed" means prescribed by rules made under this Act;

(w) "promoter" means the authority, person or co-operative society, as the case may be, by which, or by whom, any multistoreyed building has been constructed;

(x) "properly" means the land, the multi-storeyed building, all improvement and structures thereon, and all easements, rights and appurtenances belonging thereto, and all articles of personal property intended for use in connection therewith.

Chapter II

Section 4. Ownership of apartment

(1) Every person to whom any apartment is allotted, sold or otherwise transferred by the promoter, on or after the commencement of this Act, shall, save as otherwise provided in section 6, and subject to the other provisions of this Act, be entitled to the exclusive ownership and possession of the apartment so allotted, sold or otherwise transferred to him.

(2) Every person to whom any apartment was allotted, sold or otherwise transferred by the promoter before the commencement of this Act shall, save as otherwise provided under section 6 and subject to the other provisions of this Act, be entitled, on and from such commencement, to the exclusive ownership and possession of the apartment so allotted, sold or otherwise transferred to him.

(3) Every person who becomes entitled to the exclusive ownership and possession of an apartment under sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) shall be entitled to such percentage of undivided interest in the common areas and facilities as may be specified in the Deed of Apartment and such percentage shall be computed by taking, as a basis, the value of the apartment in relation to the value of the property.

(4) (a) The percentage of the undivided interest of each apartment owner in the common areas and facilities shall have a permanent character, and shall not be altered without the written consent of all the apartment owners.

(b) The percentage of the undivided interest in the common areas and facilities shall not be separated from the apartment to which it appertains and shall be deemed to be conveyed or encumbered with the apartment, even though such interest is not expressly mentioned in the conveyance or other instrument.

(5) The common areas and facilities shall remain undivided and no apartment owner or any other person shall bring any action for partition or division of any part thereof, and any covenant to the contrary shall be void.

(6) Each apartment owner may use the common areas and facilities in accordance with the purposes for which they are intended without hindering or encroaching upon the lawful rights of the other apartment owners.

(7) The necessary work relating to maintenance, repair and replacement of the common areas and facilities and the making of any additions or improvements thereto, shall be carried out only in accordance with the provisions of this Act and the bye-laws.

(8) The Association of Apartment Owners shall have the irrevocable right, to be exercised by the Board or Manager, to have access to each apartment from time to time during reasonable hours for the maintenance, repairs or replacement of any of the common areas or facilities therein, or accessible therefrom, or for making emergency repairs therein necessary to prevent damage to the common areas and facilities or to any other apartment or apartments.

Section 5. Apartment to be heritable and transferable

Subject to the provisions of section 6, each apartment, together with the undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant to such apartment, shall, for all purpose constitute as a heritable and transferable immovable property within the meaning of any law for the time being in force, and accordingly, an apartment owner may transfer his apartment and the percentage of undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant to such apartment by way of sale, mortgage, lease, gift, exchange or in any other manner Whatsoever in the same manner, to the same extent and subject to the same rights, privileges, obligations, liabilities, investigations, legal proceedings, remedy and to penalty, forfeiture or punishment as any other immovable property or make a bequest of the same under the law applicable to the transfer and succession of immovable property;

Provided that where the allotment, sale or other transfer of any apartment has been made by any group housing co-operative society in favour of any member thereof, the transferability of such apartment and all other matters shall be regulated by the law applicable to such group housing co-operative society.

Section 6. Ownership of apartment subject to conditions

Where any allotment, sale or other transfer of any apartment has been made, whether before or after the commencement of this Act, in pursuance of any promise of payment, or part payment, of the consideration thereof, the allottee or transferee, as the case may be, shall not become entitled to the ownership and possession of that apartment on to a percentage of undivided interest in the common areas and facilities apurtenant to such apartment, until full payment has been made of the consideration thereof together with interest, if any due thereon, and where any such allottee or transferee has been inducted into the possession of such apartment or any part thereof in pursuance of such allotment or transfer, he shall, until the full payment of the consideration has been made, continue to remain in possession thereof on the same terms and conditions on which he was so inducted into possession of such apartment of part thereof.

Section 7. Compliance with the covenants and bys laws

Each apartment owner shall comply strictly with the bye-laws and with the covenants, conditions and restrictions set forth in the Deed of Apartment, and failure to comply with any of them shall be a ground for action to recover sums due for damages, or for injunctive relief, or both, by the Manager or Board on behalf of the Association of Apartment Owners, or, in a proper case, by an aggrieved apartment owner.

Section 8. Right of re-entry

(1) Where any land is given on lease by a person (hereafter in this section referred to as the lessor) to another person' (hereafter in his section referred to as the lessee, which term shall include a person in whose favour a sub-lease of such land has been granted), and any multistoreyed building has been constructed on such lease-hold land by the lessee or by any other person authorised by him or claiming through him, such lessee shall grant in respect of the land as many sub-lease as there are apartments in such multi-storeyed building and shall execute separate deeds of sub-lease in respect of such land in favour of each apartment owner,--

(a) in the case of a multi-storeyed building constructed before the commencement of this Act, within three months from such commencement, or

(b) in the case of a multi-storeyed building constructed after the commencement of this Act, within three months from the date on which the possession of any apartment in such multi-storeyed building is delivered to him:

Provident that no sub-lease in respect of any land shall be granted except on the same terms and conditions on which the lease in respect of the land has been granted by the lessor and no additional terms and conditions shall be imposed by the lessee except with the previous approval of the lessor.

(2) Where the lessee has any reason to suspect that there had been any breach of the terms and conditions of the sub-lease referred to in sub-section (1), he may himself inspect the land on which the multistoreyed building containing the concerned apartment has been constructed, or may authorise one or more persons to inspect such land and make a report as to whether there had been any breach of the terms and conditions of any sub-lease in respect of such land and, if so, the nature and extent of such breach, and for this purpose, it shall be lawful for the lease or any person authorised by him to enter into, and to be in, the land in relation to which such breach has been or is suspected to have been committed.

(3) Where the lessee or any person authorised by him makes an inspection of the land referred to in sub-section (1), he shall record in writing his finding on such inspection [a true copy of which shall be furnished to the apartment owner by whom such breach of the terms and conditions of sub-lease in respect of the land appurtenant to the apartment owned by him has been committed (hereinafter referred to as the defaulting apartment owner)] and where such finding indicate that there has been any breach of the terms and conditions of the sub-lease in respect of such land, the lessee may, by a notice in writing require the defaulting apartment owner to refrain from committing any breach of the terms and conditions of the sub-lease in respect of such land, or to pay in lieu thereof such composition fees as may be specified in the notice in accordance with such scales of omposition fees as may be prescribed.

(4) The defaulting apartment owner who is aggrieved by any notice served on him by the lessee under sub-section (3) may, within thirty days from the the date of service of such notice, prefer an appeal to the Court of the District Judge having jurisdiction (hereinafter referred to as the District Court), either challenging the finding of the lessee or any person authorised by him or disputing the amount of composition fees as specified in the notice, and the District Court may, after giving the parties a reasonable opportunity of being heard, confirm, alter or reverse those findings or may confirm, reduce or increase the amount of composition fees or set aside the notice.

(5) Where, on the breach of any terms and conditions of any sublease in respect of any land, any composition fees become payable, the defaulting apartment owner shall be deemed to have been guilty of such breach and in default of payment thereof it shall be lawful for the lessee to recover the amount of the composition fees from the defaulting apartment owner as an arrear of land revenue.

(6) Where any composition fees are paid whether in pursuance of the notice served under sub-section (3) or in accordance with the decision of the District Court or a higher on appeal, no further action shall be taken by the lessor for the breach of the terms and conditions of the sub-lease (sic) respect of the land in relation to which payment of such composition fees has been made.

(7) If the defaulting apartment owner omits or fails to refrain from committing any breach of the terms and conditions of the sub-lease in respect of the land or, as the case may be, omits or fails to pay the composition fees in lieu thereof--

(i) in accordance with the notice issued by the lessee under sub-section (3), or

(ii) where the findings of the lessee or the person authorised, to inspect the land about any breach of the terms and conditions of any sub-lease in respect of the land or the amount of composition fees specified in the notice issued by the lessee are altered by the District Court on appeal or by any higher court on further appeal, in accordance with the decision of the District Court or such higher court, as the case may be,

the lessee shall be entitled,--

(a) where no appeal has been preferred under sub-section (4), within sixty days from the date of service of the notice under sub-section (3), or

(b) where in an appeal has been preferred under sub-section (4), within sixty days from the date on which the appeal is finally disposed of by the District Court or, where any further appeal is preferred to a higher court, by such higher court,

to exercise the 'right of re-entry in respect of the undivided interest of the lessee in the land appurtenant to the apartment owned by the defaulting apartment owner, and where such right of re-entry cannot be exercised except by the ejectment of the defaulting apartment owner from his apartment, such right of re-entry shall include a right to eject the defaulting apartment owner from the concerned apartment:

Provided that no such ejectment shall be made unless the defaulting apartment owner has been paid by the lessee such amount as compensation for such ejectment as may be determined in accordance with the prescribed scales of compensation.

(8) No appeal preferred under sub-section (4) shall be admitted, unless twenty-five per cent. of the composition fees specified in the notice served on the defaulting apartment owner has been deposited to the credit of the District Court in savings bank account to be opened by the District Court in any branch of an approved bank:

Provided that the District Court may, on sufficient cause being shown, either remit or reduce the amount of such deposit, and the interest accruing, on such deposit, shall enure to the credit of defaulting apartment owner by whom such deposit has been made:

Provided further that the amount of such deposit together with the interest due thereon shall be distributed by the District Court in accordance with the decision in such appeal, or where any further appeal has been preferred against such decision, in accordance with the decision in such further appeal.

(9) The defaulting apartment owner, who is aggrieved by the amount offered to be paid to him under the proviso to sub-section (7) as compensation for ejectment from his apartment may, within thirty days from the date of such offer, prefer an appeal to the District Court and the District Court may, after giving the parties a reasonable opportunity of being heard, maintain increase or reduce the amount of compensation.

(10) On the ejectment of the defaulting apartment owner from the apartment under sub-section (7), the lessee by whom such ejectment has been made may a fresh allotment of the concerned apartment to any other person on such terms and conditions as he may think fit:

Provided that the consideration for such fresh allotment shall not be more than the amount which has been paid to the defaulting apartment owner as compensation.

(11) Where any lessee omits or fails to take any action either in accordance with the provisions of sub-section (2) or sub-section (3) or sub-section (7), the lessor may, in the first instance, require the lessee by a notice in writing to take action against the defaulting apartment owner under sub-section (2) or sub-section (3) or, as the case may be, under sub-section (7), within a period of ninety days from the date of service of such notice, and in the event of the omission or failure of the lessee to do so within such period, the lessor may himself take action as contained in sub-section (2) or sub-section (3) or sub-section (7), and the provisions of sub-section (4) to sub-section (6) and sub-section (8) to sub-section (10), shall as far as may be, apply to any action taken by him as if such action had been taken by the lessee.

(12) For the removal of doubts, it is hereby declared that no work in any apartment by the owner thereof shall be deemed to be a breach of the terms of the sub-lease in respect of the land on which the multistoreyed building containing such apartment has been constructed unless the work is prohibited by section 11.

Explanation.--In this action, "approved bank" means the State Bank of India constituted under section 3 of the State Bank of India Act, 1955, 23 of 1955 or a subsidiary bank constituted under section 3 of the State Bank of India (Subsidiary Banks) Act, 1959, 38 of 1959 or a corresponding new bank constituted under section 3 of the Banking Companies (Acquisition and Transfer of Undertakings) Act, 1970, 5 of 1970 or a corresponding new bank constituted under section 3 of the Banking Companies (Acquisition and Transfer of Undertakings) Act, 1980, 40 of 1980.

Section 9. Purchasers or persons taking lease of apartments from apartment owners to execute an undertaking

Notwithstanding anything contained in the Transfer of Property Act, 1882, 4 of 1982 or in any other law for the time being in the force, any person acquiring any apartment from any apartment owner by gift, exchange, purchase or otherwise, or taking lease of an apartment from an apartment owner for a period of thirty years or more, shall,--

(a) in respect of the said apartment, be subject to the provisions of this Act; and

(b) execute and register an instrument in such from, in such manner and within such period as may be prescribed giving an undertaking to comply with the covenants, conditions and restrictions, subject to which such apartment is owned by the apartment owner aforesaid.

Section 10. Benamidar of the apartment to be deemed to be the real owner

If any apartment is acquired by any person, whether by allotment, sale or otherwise with the consideration thereof paid or provided by another person, the acquirer shall, notwithstanding anything contained in the Transfer of Property Act, 1882, 4 of 1982 or in the Indian Trusts Act, 1882 2 of 1982 or in any other law for the time being in force, be deemed to be the real owner of such apartment, and no court shall entertain any claim of the person paying or providing such consideration for title to such apartment on the ground that the acquisition of the apartment was made on behalf of such person or on behalf of someone through whom such person claims.

Section 11. Certain works prohibited

No apartment owner shall do any work which would be prejudicial to the soundness or safety of the property or reduce the value thereof or impair any easement or hereditament or shall add any material structure or excavate any additional basement or cellar without first obtaining the consent of all the other apartment owners.

Explanation.--In this section, reference to apartment owners shall be construed, in relation to a multi-storeyed building in any block, pocket or other designated area, the apartment owners of the concerned multi-storeyed building in such block, pocket or other designated area.

Section 12. Encumbrances against apartments

(1) The owner of each apartment may create any encumbrance, only against the apartment owned by him and the percentage of the undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant to such apartment in the same manner and to the same extent as may be created in relation to any other separate parcel of property subject to individual ownership.

Provided that where any such encumbrance is created, the apartment in relation to which such encumbrance has been created shall not be partitioned or sub-divided.

(2) No labour performed or material furnished with the consent, or at the request, of an apartment owner or his agent or his contractor or sub-contractor, shall be the basis for a charge or any encumbrance under the provisions of the Transfer of Property Act, 1882, 4 of 1982 against the apartment or property of any other apartment owner not expressly consenting to, or requesting the same, except that such express consent shall be deemed to be given by the other apartment owner in the case of emergency repairs thereto.

(3) The labour performed and material furnished for the common areas and facilities, if duly authorised by the Association of Apartment Owners in accordance with the provisions of this Act or the bye-laws, shall be deemed to be performed or furnished with the express consent of each apartment owner and shall be the basis for a charge or encumbrance under the Act aforesaid against each of the apartments and shall be subject to the provisions of sub-section (4).

(4) In the event of a charge or any encumbrance against two or more apartments becoming effective, the apartment owners of the separate apartments may remove their apartments and the percentage of undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant to such apartments from the charge or encumbrance on payment of the fractional or proportional amounts attributable to each of the apartments affected and on such payment, the apartment and the percentage of undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant thereto shall be free of the charge or encumbrance so removed:

Provided that such partial payment shall not prevent the person having a charge or any of the encumbrances from proceeding to enforce the rights in relation to the amount not so paid, against any other apartment and the percentage of undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant to such apartment.

(5) On any such payment, discharge on other satisfaction, referred to in sub-section (4), the apartment and the percentage of undivided interest in the common areas and facilities appurtenant thereto shall be free and clear of the charge or encumbrance, so paid, satisfied or discharged.