At, Kerala State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission Thiruvananthapuram
By, THE HONOURABLE MR. JUSTICE L. MANOHARAN
By, THE HONOURABLE PROF. K. MADHURI LATHA
By, MEMBER & THE HONOURABLE MR. PROF. R. VIJAYAKRISHNAN
For the Appearing Parties: -------------
L. Manoharan, President:
1. The opposite parties in O.P. No. 129/1999 on the file of the Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, Pathanamthitta are the appellants.
2. Complainant approached the District Forum with a grievance that though he had applied for telephone connection on 27.2.1993 and remitted Rs. 2,000/- towards the charges, the connection was
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not accorded till date of the complaint. He alleged that the telephone connection was given to other applicants who registered their name till 31.3.1997 inspite of that he is not given the telephone connection till date and the same would constitute deficiency in service. Consequently he is entitled to compensation for the injury caused to him, the opposite party sought to maintain that there is no deficiency in service since 11 K.V. electric line is there parallel to the telecom route, the connection should be given only by erecting over head lines, alternatively underground cable had to be laid for the entire route. This would take time, at any rate they would be able to provide connection in a period of three months.3. Opposite parties has also filed a supplementary version. The complainant gave evidence as P.W. 1 produced Exbts. P1 and P2 and has also took out a Commission who filed Exbt. C1 report and Exbt. C1(a) sketch. Relying on the said evidence of the complainant the District Forum made direction to give connection forthwith and the complainant was also allowed to realise compensation of Rs. 2,000/- along with costs Rs. 1,500/-. It is the said direction that is under challenge in this appeal.4. It is submitted by the learned Counsel for the appellant that telephone connection has since been given that means a part of the order has already been complied with, what now remains to be considered is whether there is deficiency in service consequent upon which the complainant is eligible for compensation and if so, what should be the quantum. The District Forum found deficiency in service mainly relying on Exbt. C1 report along with Exbt. C1(a) rough sketch. No objection to the Commission report was substantiated and, therefore, it cannot be said that the District Forum has committed any fault in relying on Exbt. C1 report and Exbt. C1(a) sketch. The District Forum extracts the relevant portion of Exbt. C1 in which the Commissioner states that from the point mentioned in the report the telephone connection could be given without crossing the 11 KV electric line or crossing the property of others. When such is the position if there was still any difficulty in giving the connection, it was for the opposite party to have atleast filed an affidavit and offered for cross-examination as to the said technical difficulty in giving connection. But none of the opposite parties gave evidence. Consequently it has to be found that there was deficiency of service.5. As regards the quantum of compensation the complainant was awarded Rs. 2,000/- towards mental agony. Now it is submitted that the connection was provided on 5.8.1999 whereas the version was filed on 19.5.1999. Wherein the opposite party stated that it would be possible to give connection in about three months. The connection was given within three months of the said filing of the version. This also has to be taken into consideration in fixing the quantum. So understood, we consider that the compensation that can be awarded is Rs. 1,000/-. No interference in any other part of the order is called for.6. In the result the appeal is allowed in part by modifying the quantum of compensation to Rs. 1,000/- instead of Rs. 2,000/-. There will be no other modification of the order of the District Forum. In this appeal there will be no order as to costs.
"2001 (3) CPJ 554,"