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Pankaj Jain v/s Bhatia & Co. & Another

Company & Directors' Information:- PANKAJ INDIA PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U18101DL1996PTC081277

Company & Directors' Information:- PANKAJ PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U29130RJ1985PTC003463

Company & Directors' Information:- S N BHATIA AND CO PRIVATE LIMITED [Active] CIN = U99999DL1976PTC008293

Company & Directors' Information:- BHATIA AND COMPANY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U70109DL1986PTC024822

Company & Directors' Information:- K. BHATIA AND COMPANY PRIVATE LIMITED [Strike Off] CIN = U51420MH1960PTC011708

    Revision Petition No. 238 of 2018

    Decided On, 20 September 2018

    At, National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission NCDRC


    For the Petitioner: Jaswant Persoya, Advocate. For the Respondents: R1, Vipin Singhania, R2, Archit Ashwani, Advocate.

Judgment Text

The complainants/petitioners booked Gypsy vehicles with the respondent for the purpose of earning their livelihood. They wanted to take tourists in National Park Ranthambor, in the aforesaid Gypsies and earn their livelihood in the aforesaid manner. For the purpose of purchasing the vehicles one of the petitioners had also taken a loan which was also paid to the respondent. The respondent however did not provide the vehicles booked by the petitioners/complainants and refunded the amount which it had received from them. Being aggrieved the petitioners/complainants approached the concerned District Forum by way of separate consumer complaints.

2. The complaints were resisted by the respondent inter alia on the ground that the petitioners/complainants were not the consumers, they having booked the vehicle for commercial purpose.

3. The District Forum allowed the complaints and directed the respondent to pay Rs. 1.00 lac each as compensation, along with the cost of litigation quantified at Rs. 5,000 each. Being aggrieved by the order passed by the District Forum, the respondent approached the concerned State Commission by way of separate appeals. The State Commission allowed the appeals filed by the respondent on the ground that having booked the vehicles for commercial purpose, the petitioners/complainants were not consumers within the meaning of the Consumer Protection Act. Being aggrieved from the order of the State Commission, the petitioners/complainants are before this Commission by way of these revision petitions.

4. It was specifically averred in the consumer complaints that the vehicles were booked by the petitioners/complainants for the purpose of earning their livelihood since the petitioners/complainants wanted to earn their livelihood by taking tourists on those vehicles to National Park, Ranthambor. They were consumers within the meaning of Section 2(1)(d) of the Consumer Protection Act. The State Commission therefore, was not justified in saying that they were not consumers in terms of Consumer Protection Act.

5. On merits, it is not in dispute that the vehicles were booked by the petitioners/complainants with the respondent. It is also not in dispute that the bookings were later cancelled and the vehicles were not provided. As a result not only the petitioners/complainants lost interest on that amount which had been paid to the respondent they were also deprived of earning their livelihood for substantial period by taking the tourists to Ranthambor National Park in those vehicles. Considering all the facts and circumstances of the case, the revision petitions are disposed of with the following directions:

(i) The order passed by the State Commission is set aside.

(ii) The respondent is directed to pay interest to the petitioners / complainants @ 12% per annum on the amount which they had paid to it, from the date of payment till the date on which the cheques of refund were actually received by the petitioner/com-plainants. Interest, if any, already paid to the petitioner/complainant, will be deducted, while co

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mplying with this direction. (iii) The respondent shall pay Rs. 50,000 as compensation and the cost of litigation to the petitioners/complainants in each case. The payment in terms of this order shall be made six weeks from today. The revision petitions stand disposed of. Revision Petition disposed of.