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New India Assurance Co. Ltd. v/s Rajendra Kumar & Another


Company & Directors' Information:- THE NEW INDIA ASSURANCE COMPANY LIMITED [Active] CIN = L66000MH1919GOI000526

Company & Directors' Information:- THE NEW INDIA ASSURANCE COMPANY LIMITED [Active] CIN = L99999MH1919GOI000526

Company & Directors' Information:- THE NEW INDIA ASSURANCE COMPANY LIMITED [Active] CIN = U99999MH1919GOI000526

Company & Directors' Information:- RAJENDRA LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U99999KA1943PLC000306

Company & Directors' Information:- RAJENDRA KUMAR AND COMPANY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U74920RJ1996PTC011712

Company & Directors' Information:- RAJENDRA CORPORATION PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U17219TZ1948PTC000161

    First Appeal No. 892 of 2010

    Decided On, 11 October 2019

    At, Madya Pradesh State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission Bhopal

    By, THE HONOURABLE DR.(MRS.) MONIKA MALIK
    By, PRESIDING MEMBER & THE HONOURABLE MR. S.S. BANSAL
    By, MEMBER

    For the Appellant: Shivali Singh Parihar, Advocate. For the Respondents: Deepash Joshi, Advocate.



Judgment Text


Dr. Monika Malik, Presiding Member.

1. This appeal by the opposite party/appellant is directed against the order dated 15.12.2009 passed by the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, Dhar (for short the ‘Forum’) in C. C. No. 80/2008 whereby the complaint filed by the complainants/respondents has been partly allowed.

2. Briefly put, the facts of the case as narrated by the complainants are that the complainants had obtained Householder’s Insurance Policies from the opposite party Insurance Company, one for Indore and the other for Dhar, under which the coverage for policy issued in the name of Shyam Sunder Modi was w.e.f. 27.12.2004 to 26.12.2005 and the coverage for Rajendra Modi’s policy was w.e.f. 24.12.2004 to 23.12.2005. The description of the property, which was insured has been mentioned in the policy schedule. During the currency of the policy period, theft occurred in Indore premises in the period from 30.10.2005 to 3.11.2005. Considerable volume of jewellery, which was kept in the Indore residence, upto the tune of approximately Rs. 7.07 lakh was stolen. The FIR was lodged in the matter and the opposite party-Insurance Company was intimated in this regard. The complainant alleged that the Insurance Company after thorough investigation and loss assessment arranged payment to the insured for a sum of Rs. 2,22,870 only. Alleging deficiency in service on part of the opposite party and feeling aggrieved by the inadequate amount being arranged for them, the complainants preferred a complaint before the District Forum, Dhar claiming relief.

3. The opposite party-Insurance Company resisted the complaint stating that out of the stolen jewellery, few articles which were stolen were insured under the Dhar insurance policy and were kept in Indore premises. On this account, liability of Insurance Company regarding payment of insurance claim with respect to the articles insured under the Dhar Householders’ insurance policy is limited to 20% of the claim amount. On the basis of the aforesaid, a sum of Rs. 2,22,780, as assessed by the Surveyor has already been given to the complainants. The complainants do not deserve any further relief, which would be beyond the scope of the insurance policy.

4. Learned Forum after considering the evidence on record partly allowed the complaint and awarded Rs. 5,77,000 to the complainants towards the insurance claim of the stolen jewellery articles along with compensation of Rs. 5,000. Aforesaid amount is awarded with interest @ 8% p.a. from the date of filing of complaint, till its realization. Cost of Rs. 1,000 is also awarded. Hence this appeal.

5. Heard. Perused the record.

6. Learned Counsel for the opposite party/appellant-Insurance Company vehemently argued that the Forum has erred in awarding the amount in the impugned order, which has been awarded without considering the terms and conditions of the Householders’ insurance policy. She argued that at Page No. 3 of the policy terms and conditions, under the ‘Extension Clause’ it is clear that liability of the company in respect of property which was removed from the insured premises shall not exceed one fifth of the total sum insured under this section. The claim put forward by the complainants is squarely covered under the Extension Clause, which the Forum has failed to appreciate and has given adverse finding in paragraph 17 of the impugned order. She argued that the impugned order deserves to be quashed.

7. Learned Counsel for the complainant/respondent argued that the policy schedule of the Householders’ insurance policy issued by the appellant bears clear mention regarding jewellery and valuables and it has been categorically mentioned under Section-3 that there is coverage of ‘All Risks for Jewellery and Valuables’. He argued that the complainants are the members of the joint family set up and they keep moving to from Indore to Dhar and vice versa. The entire jewellery articles kept in both premises were insured under the Householders’ insurance policy provided by the appellant, regarding which the Insurance Company had charged adequate premium. He argued that the jewellery was to be kept in the Indore premises and it is not the case wherein the jewellery articles insured under the Dhar premises were moved to Indore premises. He argued that once the Insurance Company has issued the insurance policy covering risk of both premises of the complainants, they cannot escape from their liability to pay the sum insured under the aforesaid policies.

8. As we carefully go through the ‘General Conditions’ of the ‘Householders’ insurance policy’, issued by the appellant-Insurance Company which annexed as ‘C-1’ in the record of the Forum, we observe that corresponding to Clause 3 ‘All risks for jewellery and valuables’ (mentioned in the policy schedule), the terms and conditions regarding payment of sum insured, under this head, are mentioned as:

SECTION-III—ALL RISKS (JEWELLERY AND VALUABLES)

The company will indemnify the insured or any member of the family in respect of loss of or damage to jewellery and valuables caused by Accident or Misfortune whilst anywhere in India. Provided that the liability of the Company in respect of any one item in any one period of insurance will not exceed the sum insured set against such item in the Schedule hereto and not exceeding in the aggregate the total sum insured hereby. Provided further that where damaged to any item can be repaired the Company will pay expenses necessarily incurred to restore the damage item to its former state of serviceability not exceeding the sum insured in respect of such item.

It is expressly declared and agreed that the condition of coverage in so far as this Section is concerned is deemed deleted.

EXTENSION

The insurance by this policy applied to jewellery and Valuables insofar as such property is not otherwise insured whilst temporarily removed and during transit anywhere in India to other premises used for temporary residence by the insured or any member of the Insured’s family permanently residing with him during any period or periods not exceeding in the aggregate One Hundred and Twenty (120) days in any one period of insurance, provided that the liability of the Company in respect of the property so removed shall not exceed one-fifth of the total sum insured under this section.

9. Admitedly, there are two Householders’ insurance policies. One is in the name of Shyam Sunder Modi, resident of Indore bearing the risk of Jewellery & Valuables for sum insured of Rs. 2,45,500 and the other Householders’ insurance policy is in the name of Mr. Rajendra Kumar S/o Shri Parmanand Das Modi containing the risk of Jewellery and Valuables for Rs. 8,18,000 respectively. The insurance policies bear clear description of ‘All risks for Jewellery and Valuables’ with a different list of declared jewellery items.

10. If we go by the submission of the complainants/respondents, in case of a joint family stays in Indore and keeps all jewellery and valuables in Indore then it is expected that the entire jewellery articles would be declared as being contained in the Householders’ insurance policy for Indore. It is clear from the terms and conditions of the insurance policy that the Insurance Company is liable to pay only for declared jewellery articles in the insurance policy schedule. Certain jewellery articles which are declared in Dhar insurance policy are not at all mentioned in Indore Householders’ insurance policy, but were found to be stolen from insured premises of Indore. The Surveyor was correct in assessing that the Insurance Company is liable to pay only for declared jewellery, which was insured and declared in the insurance policy and was stolen whilst in the insured premises of Indore. As per ‘Extension Clause’ contained in Section 3-’All risks (Jewellery & Valuables)’, the appellant Insurance Company is liable to pay only to a certain extent when the declared jewellery articles are removed from the insured premises.

11. Therefore, in our considered view the surveyor has arrived at proper conclusion, after considering the items which were stolen from the Indore premises, insured under both the Householders’ insurance policy and has assessed the amount of the same. The surveyor has mentioned the cost of jewellery insured under Indore policy as Rs. 71,000. The cost of jewellery under Dhar policy is mentioned as Rs. 4,47,273 out of which the payable amount after 20% restriction comes as Rs. 1,63,600. The complainants had also requested the Insurance Company for payment of Rs. 5,83,000 on the basis surveyor’s assessment vide their letter dated 11.10.2007 (Exhibit ‘P-6’), which indicates that they accede with him, regarding the list of stolen jewellery articles, insured under both insurance policies. The Forum has given erroneous findings in the impugned order which are contrary to the evidence available on record.

12. Admittedly, the Insurance Company had paid a sum of Rs. 2,22,780 to the respondents/complainants. However, we observe that ther

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e is superfluous deduction towards usage allowance and impurity of 5%, which we find is wrongly deducted from the payable claim amount, when the theft had taken place under the currency of the insurance policy for specific sum insured. We find that the complainants/respondents are also entitled for Rs. 11,780. 13. The order of the District Forum is modified to the extent that the complainants/respondents are entitled for Rs. 2,22,780 as assessed by the Surveyor along with Rs. 11,780, out of which Rs. 2,22,780 has already been paid by the appellant to the respondents, in place of Rs. 5,77,000 as awarded by the Forum. The appellant shall pay to the respondent Rs. 11,780 along with interest @ 8% p.a. from the date of execution of the payment voucher till its realization. Rest of the order regarding compensation and costs shall remain unaltered. However, no order as to costs of this appeal. 14. With the aforesaid direction, this appeal is disposed of. Appeal disposed of.
O R







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