No home, no votes: Noida flat buyers pledge to use NOTA option in LS elections

Peeved over delays in getting possession of flats, a section of home buyers in Noida and Greater Noida have started an initiative, pledging to use the NOTA (none of the above) options, instead of voting for any candidate in the Lok Sabha elections

Flat buyers under a registered umbrella body, Noida Extension Flat Owners and Members Association (NEFOMA), have launched a ‘No Home, No Vote’ drive to express their angst with their elected representatives and state as well as central governments, over delays in getting possession of flats. Noida and Greater Noida are part of the Gautam Buddh Nagar parliamentary constituency, which has over 22.5 lakh votes. Notably, over 5 lakh new voters have been enrolled since 2014 and a major chunk of them are flat buyers, according to the district administration.

“The flat buyers in Greater Noida West have not got the flats, even after the assurance from the prime minister. Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath constituted three ministerial committees but those also did not help. Hence, our association has started the ‘No Home, No Vote’ drive from Rudra Projects in Greater Noida,” NEFOMA president Annu Khan said. “Buyers say there is no difference between the previous governments and the present government. No leader comes to the support of the flat buyers. Hence, the flat buyers have decided they will vote for NOTA,” Khan said in a statement.

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In 2014, a total 3,836 votes were polled for ‘None of the Above’ (NOTA) in Gautam Buddh Nagar constituency, less than one per cent of the total votes cast that year. NOTA was introduced to empower the citizens to indicate their disapproval for all contestants. Khan claimed the issues of the flat buyers have been persisting for around 10 years now and they have taken up their grievances with the governments of the Samajwadi Party, the Bahujan Samaj Party and now the BJP but to no help. “For years, the elected representatives have not come to resolve the flat buyers’ problems and are now campaigning in residential societies, just before the polls,” he alleged.

Flat buyer Ajay Tomar claimed that Rudra Projects had promised to deliver his flat in 2015 but he had not got it. “In between the government, the local authorities and the builders, it is the common man who gets cheated after spending their life-long earnings,” he said. Voting for the Lok Sabha polls in Noida and Greater Noida is due on April 11, 2019, during the first leg of the seven-phased elections.

Khan claimed that the 2010-founded NEFOMA has a network of 20,000 to 25,000 flat buyers and indirectly links around a lakh people in Noida, Greater Noida and adjoining Ghaziabad. He said the body has linked aggrieved flat buyers of major projects like Unitech, Amrapali, Jaypee and around 50 smaller ones across Delhi-NCR. “We are reaching out to our network via different Facebook and WhatsApp groups that we have for various building projects, for this campaign,” he said.