Utpal Kumar Bhattacharya, Member
Instant Appeal u/s 15 of the C.P Act, 1986 has been filed by the Appellant/OP No. 1 challenging the judgment and order dated 06.07.2017 passed by the Ld. District Forum in Complaint Case No.CC/84/2017 allowing the complaint on contest against the Appellant/OP No. 1 with the directions as under:
“That the complaint be and the same is allowed in part against OP-1;
That the OP-1 is directed to pay back Rs 7800/-(Seven Thousand Eight Hundred) on receiving the old/damaged TV set at OP-2’s shop premises, to the complainant within 15 days from the date of this order;
That the OP-1 is directed to pay to the complainant Rs 7200/- as litigation cost to the complainant within 15 days from the date of this order;
That on failure of OP-1 to comply with the above orders, complainant shall have liberty to put it into execution in terms of appropriate section of the Act ibid.”
The brief fact of the case was that the Respondent No. 1/Complainant purchased one Samsung LED TV from Great Eastern Trading Company Sreerampur Branch on 02.11.2011 on payment of consideration of Rs.30,900/-. Said TV, after being installed at the receipt of the Respondent No. 1/Complainant, gave a continuous and satisfactory service for long 5 years. On 19.10.2016, the front glass of the TV was accidentally cracked. The Appellant/OP No. 1, on the receipt of the information of the said damage of the subject TV from the Respondent No.1/Complainant, sent one technician from Respondent/OP No.2, its service centre, who examined the TV on receipt of a service charge of Rs. 692/- and left with assurance that the customer care centre would contact the Respondent No. 1/Complainant direct and inform him about the step to be taken for repairing the subject TV and charges to be paid for that purpose.
No information, however, was received from the customer care centre till 21.10.2015. The customer care centre, on approach, informed the Respondent No. 1/Complainant that the spare parts needed for replacement were not available as the parts of the TV sold 5 years back became obsolete with technology advancement and production of new gadgets of advance technology with the passing of time.
The Respondent No. 1/Complainant was, however, given a payback offer in exchange of the old LED TV and on payback an amount of Rs.5,253/- after deducting the depriciation amount by the Appellant/OP No. 1. The Respondent No. 1/Complainant was not satisfied with the failure of the Appellant/OP No. 1 to repair the subject TV set and the payback offer given to him. Being aggrieved, he resorted to the legal steps filing the Complaint Case before the Ld. District Forum. Impugned judgment and order under challenge in the instant Appeal originated from the said Complaint Case.
Heard Ld. Advocates appearing on behalf of both sides.
Ld. Advocate representing the Appellant/OP No. 1 submitted in brief the facts of the case in the same lines narrated hereinabove and submitted that the TV panel was broken because of the fault of the Respondent No. 1/Complainant himself and none else. The TV screen, as stated, could not be replaced because of non-availability of the said items of a product of 5 years old which had become almost obsolete consequent upon advent of the products of new and better technology. The Ld. District Forum did not appreciate the said reason and astonishingly enough, passed an order directing the OPs not only to pay higher amount of Rs. 7,800/- as the payback offer but also to pay to the Respondent No. 1/Complainant a litigation cost of Rs. 7,200/- for apparently no justified reason.
The Ld. Advocate concluded his submission with the prayer for allowing the Appeal setting aside the impugned judgment and order.
Ld. Advocate appearing on behalf of the Respondent No.1/Complainant, per contra, submitted that the service centre was contacted immediately after the accidental damage of the TV. The Respondent No. 1/Complainant was even ready to pay for replacement but, the Appellant/OP No. 1 refused to accede to the proposal. When contacted on subsequent occasion, the Appellant/OP No. 1 refused to render any service.
With the above submission, the Ld. Advocate prayed for the Appeal to be dismissed affirming the impugned judgment and order.
Perused the papers on record and considered submission of the Ld. Advocates appearing on behalf of both sides.
It appeared that the subject TV had exceeded its period of warranty. The front glass of the TV got accidentally cracked because of the fault of none else than the Respondent No. 1/Complainant himself. The Appellant/OP No. 1 did not have any liability for repairing the damage sustained by the subject TV from that angle.
The effort of the Appellant/OP No. 1, as it appeared from the available record, could not succeed because of non-availability of the required parts of an almost obsolete product which he had explained before the Respondent No. 1/Complainant who, unfortunately, was reluctant to appreciate the Appellant/OP No. 1’s predicaments.
The Ld. District Forum had passed the impugned judgment and order enhancing the buyback offer as to Rs. 7,800/- as against Rs. 5,253/-, the offer given by the Appellant/OP No. 1. Since the said enhancement was made based on an apparently acceptable logic by the Ld. District Forum, we don’t differ from the observation of the Ld. District Forum in respect of that part only.
We, however, are not inclined to be at one with that part of the impugned judgment and order where a cost of almost equal to the ordered buyback amount has been directed to be paid by the Appellant/OP No. 1 for apparently no fault on his part and accordingly are of the view that the
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said part of the order is needed to be waived. Hence, ORDERED that the Appeal be and the same is allowed in part. The Appellant/OP No. 1 is hereby directed to pay back Rs. 7,800/- to the Respondent No. 1/Complainant on receiving back from him the old/damaged TV set at Respondent/OP No. 2’s shop premises. The order has to be carried out within 45 days from the date of the instant order, failing which, simple interest @ 9% p.a. shall accrue to the said amount from the date of default till the amount is fully realized. No order as to costs. Impugned judgment and order stands modified accordingly.