04 December, 2020

Can't Kiss The Sky

Falling foreign investment, economic uncertainty make for unhappy landlords in Delhi and Mumbai

Can't Kiss The Sky

CIRCA 1996. Pankaj Kumar, a property broker in Delhi who restricts himself to the rental business, has never had it so good. Nokia, Siemens, Motorola, Ericsson, LG, Daewoo...you name a transnational, and it's sure to be at Kumar's door, either scouring for housing for their senior expatriate executives, or in search of office space to accommodate their ever-increasing staff strength. That year, Kumar's firm PK Associates notched up a turnover of Rs 16 lakh.

It's all a distant memory now. We're approaching November '98, and PK Associates hasn't struck a deal all of this year. "TNCs don't call me up any more. The only calls I receive are from desperate landlords, whose properties have been lying vacant for nearly two years now," says Kumar. He's no exception. Delhi broker R.P. Iyer, of Iyer and Co, shares his woes. "In '96, each of my five staff members had an appointment a day. Today, we're lucky if even one of us manages to force an appointment upon a reluctant customer."

In today's plunging real estate...



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