Login Welcome, Guest
DLF paid extra for Robert Vadra's land; company refutes claims: Analysts

NEW DELHI: DLF, India's largest real estate company, paid almost two times the market price for a plot of land it bought from Robert Vadra's company, Skylight Hospitality, in Gurgaon in 2008-09, claim real estate analysts and property brokers.

In a press release issued by DLFBSE 1.22 % on Saturday, the company had said it bought a 3.5-acre plot at village Sikohpur, Gurgaon district at FSI (floor sale index) cost of Rs 2,800 per sq ft. It also claimed that the price of this property has significantly appreciated, benefitting both the company and its shareholders.

But analysts, property brokers and landowners say land in that area in 2008-09 did not cost more than Rs 1,500 per sq ft. They say that the current price of commercial FSI in the area is Rs 2,500 per sq ft, while land touching the highway costs Rs 3,000 per sq ft.

"The FSI cost in that part of Gurgaon was not more than Rs 1,500 per sq ft then and is not more than Rs 2,500 per sq ft today," said Anckur Srivasttava, chairman of GenReal Property Advisers, a real estate consulting firm.

These figures were largely confirmed by landowners and property dealer who are active in the region, but who did not wish to be quoted because of the controversy surrounding the DLF-Vadra transactions.

A DLF spokesman, however, refuted this claim and said the 3.5 acre plot was purchased from CongressPresident Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law Robert Vadra at the prevailing market price. "It was a price that made commercial sense then...you buy land in a certain location because you are aware of the master plan of the area," he said.

When asked why the company claimed the price of the property had appreciated significantly if the current market price of the land (Rs 2,500 per sq ft) was said to be below the price at which DLF bought the plot, the spokesman said even at the FSI cost of Rs 2,800 per sq ft, which translates into Rs 2,100 per sq ft of saleable price, and after including construction cost, DLF could still make a profit margin of over 50% if it develops the commercial property today.

In a statement issued on Saturday rebutting the charges leveled against it by activist-turned-politician Arvind Kejriwal, DLF had said it had bought this 3.5 acre plot for developing a commercial complex.

The company reached an agreement to buy this land from Vadra's Skylight Hospitality in 2008-09 for Rs 58 crore, and gave an advance of 50 crore as purchase consideration.