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The State Director, Khadi & Village Industries Commission v/s KISSAN SHG, Repd. by its President-Sri.Mathew Thomas & Others

    First Appeal No. A/11/408 (Arisen out of Order Dated 28/02/2010 in Case No. CC/10/253 of District Idukki)

    Decided On, 28 June 2011

    At, Kerala State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission Thiruvananthapuram

    By, THE HONOURABLE MR. M.V. VISWANATHAN JUDICIAL MEMBER & THE HONOURABLE MR. M.K. ABDULLA SONA MEMBER

    For the Appellant : V. Sureshkumar, Advocate. For the Respondents : -----



Judgment Text

SHRI.M.V. VISWANATHAN : JUDICIAL MEMBER

Appellant is the 1st opposite party and respondents 1 to 4 are the complainant and opposite parties 3, 4 and 2 respectively in CC.253/10 on the file of CDRF, Idukki. The complaint therein was filed alleging deficiency of service on the part of the opposite parties in their failure to sanction and disburse the margin money (subsidy) of Rs.11,156/- each to the members of the complainant Self Help Group of 14 members. The 1st opposite party entered appearance and filed written version denying the alleged deficiency of service. It was contended that the members of the complainant, the SHG (Self Help Group) claimed the margin money (subsidy) under Rural Employment Generation Programme (REGP) and that the said scheme ceased to exist with effect from 1/4/2008 and that the 4th opposite party sanctioned the loan to the members of the complainant SHG on 1/11/2008 and so the 1st opposite party has no liability to sanction and disburse the margin money to the members of the complainant. Thus, the 1st opposite party prayed for dismissal of the complaint. The 2nd opposite party filed written version contending that he has no role or involvement in sanctioning the project under REGP to the complainant SHG and that the 2nd opposite party is an unnecessary party to the complainant. Hence the 2nd opposite party prayed for dismissal of the complaint filed against him. The opposite parties 3 and 4 denied deficiency of service on their part. They contended that they were not informed about the R7 circular issued by Khadi and Village Industries Commission and that they served the loan on the recommendation of the 1st opposite party. It was further contended that the opposite parties 3 and 4 had no authority to sanction the margin money (subsidy) to the members of the complainant SHG and that the loan was sanctioned on the recommendation of the 1st opposite party and that the opposite parties 3 and 4 are ready to adjust the subsidy amount/margin money on getting the same from the 1st opposite party. Thus, the opposite parties 3 and 4 prayed for dismissal of the complaint filed against them.

2. Before the Forum below, the President of the complainant, SHG was examined as PW1, Exts.P1 to P4 documents were also marked on the side of the complainant. From the side of the opposite parties DWs 1 to 3 were examined. Exts.R1 to R8 documents were also marked on the side of the opposite parties. On an appreciation of the evidence on record, the Forum below passed the impugned order dated:28th February 2011 allowing the complaint and directing the 1st opposite party to disburse the subsidy amount of Rs.11,156/- each to the members of the complainant SHG with cost of Rs.2000/- The 1st opposite party is also directed to pay the decreed amount to the complainant within one month of receipt of copy of the impugned order failing which the 1st opposite party is liable to pay interest at the rate of 12% per annum on the decreed amount. Hence the present appeal by the 1st opposite party therein.

3. We heard the learned counsel for the appellant/1st opposite party on admission hearing. He submitted his arguments based on the grounds urged in the memorandum of the present appeal. He had relied on R7 circular dated:10/4/2008 issued by the Director, Khadi and Village Industries Commission, Mumbai and argued for the position that the members of the complainant SHG are not entitled for margin money under REGP (Rural Employment Generation Programme) as the said scheme was ceased to exist with effect from 1/4/2008. It is also pointed out that the loan under REGP was sanctioned to the members of the complainant by the 4th opposite party bank on 1/11/2008 and so the members of the complainant are not entitled for the margin money under REGP which ceased to exist with effect from 1/4/2008. Thus, the appellant/1st opposite party prayed for admission of the present appeal and for issue notice to the respondents in this appeal.

4. There is no dispute that the 1st respondent/complainant is a Self Help Group (SHG) consisting of 14 members and that the complainant SHG applied for the benefit under REGP (Rural Employment Generation Programme). The aforesaid REGP scheme was sanctioned by the 1st opposite party and the appellant/1st opposite party recommended the application submitted by the 1st respondent/complainant under REGP scheme. Ext.P1 and P2 documents would make it clear that the appellant/1st opposite party recommended for sanctioning financial assistance to the members of the complainant SHG on 15/6/2007 and requested the opposite parties 3 and 4 (respondents 2 and 3) for rendering financial assistance to the members of the complainant. It is to be noted that it is on the basis of the aforesaid recommendation made by the appellant/1st opposite party, the financial assistance to the members of the complainant was sanctioned by 4th opposite party bank. It is further to be noted that in the recommendation dated:15/6/2007 no date was prescribed for sanctioning the said loan. It is based on the said recommendation, the 4th opposite party sanctioned the financial assistance to the members of the complainant. It is true that the loan was sanctioned to the members of the complainant on 1/11/2008. Ext.P1 and P2 documents would also make it abundantly clear that the members of the complainant SHG are entitled to get the margin money at the rate of Rs.11,156/- being 30% of the total cost for establishing Vermi compost and Biogas plants. Thus, P1 and P2 documents would substantiate the case of the complainant in CC.253/10 for the eligibility to get the margin money to the 14 members of the complainant at the rate of Rs.11,156/-.

5. The definite case of the appellant/1st opposite party is that the members of the complainant SHG are not entitled for the margin money because of the fact that REGP scheme was ceased to exist with effect from 1/4/2008. But there is nothing on record to show that the complainant or the members of the complainant SHG were informed about the non existence of REGP scheme with effect from 1/4/2008. Ext.R7 is the circular dated:10/4/2008 issued by the Khadi and Village Industries Commission, Mumbai. It is dated:10/4/2008. The aforesaid circular was issued by the Chief Executive officer dated:28th March 2008. But there is nothing on record to show that R7 circular was served on the complainant or opposite parties 3 and 4. The mere fact that the appellant/1st opposite party published the aforesaid circular in Mathrubhopomi daily dated:1/4/2008 cannot be taken as a ground to hold that the R7 circular was communicated to the opposite parties 3 and 4 viz. the district lead bank and the Union Bank of India. More over, there is nothing on record to show that the Govt of India cancelled the implementation of the scheme under REGP (Rural Employment Generation Programme). It is further to be noted that R7 circular would only show that the REGP scheme ceased to exist with effect from 1/4/2008 and that the proposals under the said scheme are to be implemented under Prime Ministers Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP). But there is nothing on record to show that the complainant’s request under REGP was treated under PMEGP scheme. On the other hand, Ext.P1 and P2 documents would show that the appellant/1st opposite party , Khadi and Village industries Commission recommended the application submitted by the complainant under REGP scheme and forwarded the recommendation to the opposite parties 3 and 4. It is on the basis of the said recommendation the 4th opposite party/Union Bank of India sanctioned the loan to the members of the complainant SHG. No time limit was prescribed under the said recommendation. No communication was received by opposite parties 3 and 4 intimating withdrawing of the said recommendation or preventing the opposite parties 3 and 4 in sanctioning the loan under REGP. If that be so, the members of the complainant SHG are entitled to get the margin money under REGP because of the fact that the members of the complainant established the Vermi compost and biogas plants with the

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financial assistance rendered by the 4th opposite party under REGP. Thus, the appellant/1st opposite party was bound to disburse the margin money under REGP. 6. The Forum below appreciated the evidence available on record in its correct perspective. The Forum below has also analysed the testimony of DW3, the Assistant Development Officer of the 1st opposite party, Khadi and Village Industries Commission. The admission made by DW3 is sufficient enough to hold the liability of the 1st opposite party to disburse the margin money to the members of the complainant. Thus, there is no merit in the present appeal preferred by the 1st opposite party in CC.253/10. If that be so, the present appeal deserves dismissal at the admission stage itself. In the result, the appeal is dismissed at the admission state itself. The impugned order passed by the CDRF, Idukki in CC.253/10 is confirmed.
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