The New Indian Express calls DLF Garden City Google Group members “Internet Hobos”

The New Indian Express calls the members of the DLF Google Group as “Internet Hobos”, creating a lot of responses from the group members, ranging from explaining their side of the story to thrashing the article for such one-sided view..

Internet hobos stalk DLF
First Published : 06 Mar 2009 03:28:00 AM IST
Last Updated : 06 Mar 2009 07:31:13 AM IST

CHENNAI: These days of slowdown stories abound and though no Grapes of Wrath would be written there’s wrath enough on display to spin a web of it. One that has caught the imagination has an amorphous group of individuals waging an Internet war against the country’s biggest real estate player – DLF Ltd., their allegations difficult to check because there are no names to call though there is enough of name-calling in the write-ups some of these unidentified worthies have posted on the net.
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“There were three groups of buyers – a block of 75-80 per cent who were decidedly end-users, another smaller block of those who intend to rent out the units they bought and a third block who grabbed the flats for speculative gains,” says Sanjey Roy, senior general manager, Corporate Communications, DLF Ltd. “These are the people who are behind the calumny directed against DLF. I call them speculationactivists.

They claim they are 600 plus but we know they don’t number more than 150.” Among other demands, the group has been asking for a cut in prices given the current economic crisis. The group also managed to carry their grievances to the media.
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But these have failed to rein in the group of individuals waging the Internet war against DLF. “Instead, they have upped the ante,” says Roy. “They are instigating existing satisfied customers, asking them to join hands with them and fight for their unreasonable demands. Isn’t it strange they haven’t gone to court?” Roy insists the company has done everything according to law. He says the application forms that the customers signed clearly states all the terms and conditions and that DLF had nothing to hide; and that the project would be completed on time; the units ready for occupation by March-April 2011, as promised.

There the story stands; the wrath refusing to get off the anonymity of the Internet and show its face.

The way in which the article writes of DLF’s K.P.Singh meeting with the PM Manmohan Singh, also creates an impression about the author being in a more favorable position towards DLF…

In the meantime, the DLF’s K P Singh was the only real estate representative among a group of Industry bigwigs invited to meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to discuss the financial crisis and its impact on India. “This was the first time in 62 years somebody from the realty sector was given the honour, putting the stamp of ‘Industry’ on the sector,” says K K Raman, head-homes, DLF, Chennai.

Selected comments, posted as responses to the articles..

… I quickly searched on Google and found the following definition: “tramp: a disreputable vagrant; “a homeless tramp”; “he tried to help the really down-and-out bums” “. I really feel that this is not acceptable and this reporter owes an apology to the members of our group for branding us as such. We are all well educated, decent people trying protect our interests in a fair manner….

By Sundar, 3/6/2009 6:51:00 PM

…. We recently held a meeting at Taj Coramandal hotel at Nungambakkam which was attended by our members (200+) to discuss the pending issues and next steps. This was covered by some of the media houses as well. Pls note that most of the group members (around 700 members) want to exit the project due to issues highlighted below…

By Senthil, 3/6/2009 10:34:00 PM

…I strongly condemn this biased article. The usage of terms like hobos, faceless, unidentified worthies and etc., are totally uncalled for. …

By Prabu, 3/6/2009 9:21:00 PM

…. It is also an irony that author who does not give his/her own name to the article calls intrepid bloggers ‘faceless hobos’. …

By Prasad, 3/6/2009 7:00:00 PM

The following comment consolidates the issues the buyers have with DLF

Being active part of the group, lemme give you the true picture: Speculators us? We are negotiating with DLF to work our amicable terms, which is why no criminal suit has been filed yet. DLF has been stalling us saying they are working out an amicable way, a fair option which we want to pursue so you should understand why no case has been field yet. You should have come and taken names, addresses, phone numbers of people who participated in a meeting organized at Taj hotel last Sunday and then u can decide on calling us FACELESS. Why would DLF hold talk with faceless people? Well this fight just got bigger.

1. We have not signed any buyers agreement yet. which has worked to our advantage. An application for allotment has been given. That’s it. Please verify this with DLF.

2. DLF took the money from us almost a year back (31-mar-2008) and only recently ‘CLAIM’ to have got the approvals. Ask them for stamped drawings and approval details.

3. Club which was lifetime free at time of booking turned out to be 2 year annual payments . Ask them why?

4. A 5 acre forest land inside the complex was shown in initial brochures by DLF to be their own. Now we’ve discovered that it belongs to a freedom fighter whom they are trying to buy it off from. Is this legal? It is clear .. I don’t want to call the number.

5. A short 2KM, 60 ft approach road to the project was promised. Now it seems people will have to travel another 16 km additionally each day. Clear breach of misleading and amounts to breach of contract if any.

6. When booking a 1400 sq ft flat suddenly shot up to 1520 sq ft with 10% increase in carpet area.

7. 850 of us have submitted exit letters. On saying unless money is retuned we will file a criminal case DLF agreed to return the money, which has not happened yet. DLF claims only 200 people have submitted exit letters?

8. DLF claims we are speculators/investors. We are infact end users.

9. DLF unless they pay back the money with interest by mid-march, we will be staging dharna, hunger strikes, protests soon. So u can expect a lot of action soon.

10. YES A SINGLE TWIG CAN BE BROKEN. NOT A BUNCH!

By Vijay
3/6/2009 5:48:00 PM 

The full article and the other comments can be read at expressbuzz.com

Builders and the sections of conventional media need to come to terms with the new trend of online collaboration.

About ten years ago, one might not know their neighbors well until they move into their new apartment. But now the penetration of internet has enabled people to collaborate even before they buy apartments in the project. This is part of a growing trend and cannot be stopped by builders, even if they want to. The best approach will be accept it as a reality and work with a open mindset.

That is the reason we, at PlaceToLive.in, have online collaboration details listed as part of the project details.The  information includes Portal of Owners Association (ResidentialCommunity.in), Mailing Lists (Google Groups, Yahoo! Groups) and Social Networking Groups (Orkut Communities and Facebook Groups).

For DLF we have listed
Google Groups : http://groups.google.com/group/dlf-gardencity 
Orkut Community : http://www.orkut.co.in/Main#Community.aspx?cmm=62668533 

You may also want to read the discussion page detailing the recent developments on DLF Garden City

If you want your project details as part of PlaceToLive.in, along with information on the online collaboration details, kindly send a mail to admin@placetolive.in or use our Feedback Form.

Related Blog Posts :

Feb 24, 2009 : DLF reduces apartment prices in Garden City, OMR !!

Feb 25, 2009 : Buyers : “DLF Garden City Rate Cuts Not Enough, Considering Exit Offer”

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