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Peringottukara Finance Investment Company Ltd., Rep. by K.J. Sreekumar v/s Kuttappan Chettiar

    First Appeal No. 196/2004 (Arisen out of order dated 29/01/2004 in Case No. First Appeal No. 141/2003 of District Idukki)

    Decided On, 29 June 2010

    At, Kerala State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission Thiruvananthapuram


    For the Appearing Parties: R. Jayakrishnan, K.R. Haridas, Advocates.

Judgment Text


Appellant is the opposite party/financial institution in OP.141/2003 in the file of CDRF, Idukki. The appellant is under orders to refund the amount of interest recovered in excess of 24.44% and also to pay Rs.2000/- as compensation and cost of Rs.1500/- etc.

2. It is the case of the complainant that he had availed a loan of Rs.1,50,000/- from the opposite party private bank and that they collected an excess of Rs.47,892.50 when the loan was closed. It is the contention that the opposite party violated the provisions of the Kerala Money Lenders Act, 1958. The excess amount is sought to be refunded with compensation of Rs.2000/- and cost of Rs.1500/-.

3. The opposite parties have contended that the amount was availed agreeing to pay interest at 22% per annum calculated on quarterly basis on the strength of a promissory note; and further that the appellant has agreed to pay 7% of the balance amount due as service charges and also penal interest at 6%. The loan was closed only on 30.9.2000. According to them they entitled to claim the above amount.

4. The evidence adduced consisted of the testimony of PWs 1 and 2, DW1; Exts.P1 to P7 and R1 to R8.

5. The Forum has relied on the provisions of Section 7 of the Kerala Money Lenders Act, 1958 as amended by Act 30 of 1986. As per Section 7 of the above statute the money lender is not to charge interest at a rate exceeding 2 % above the maximum rate of interest charged by commercial banks on loans granted by them. Opposite party had produced Ext.R8 circular of the Catholic Syrian Bank wherein the interest rate as per RBI stipulations are specified. It is pointed out by the counsel for the appellant that as per Ext.R8 the rate of interest is specified at 22.44.%. Hence as per Section 7 of the Money Lender Act the appellant is entitled to claim 2% more which would work out to 22.44.%. The appellant has not relied on any provision or document for claiming penal interest at 6% and hence the above was disallowed. The appellant has relied on Ext.R3 the letter issued by the complainant agreeing to pay 7% of the balance amount due in every quarter as service charges. No statutory stipulation in support of the above alleged agreement has been produced or relied on. In the circumstances we find that there is no illegality in the order of the Forum disallowing the above 7% claimed as service charges. Hence we find that there is no illegality in the order of the Forum. Hence the order of the Forum is sustained and the appeal is dismissed.

Appellant is directed to refund the amount as ordered by the Forum wit

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hin three months from the date of receipt of this order failing which the respondent/complainant will be entitled for interest at 12% on the outstanding amount from today. Appeal is dismissed as above. Office will forward the LCR along with the copy of this order to the Forum urgently.