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Vijay Patel v/s Shivnath Automobiles & Another

    Revision Petition No. 2303 of 2017

    Decided On, 31 January 2018

    At, National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission NCDRC

    By, MEMBER

    For the Petitioner: Anis Ur Rehman, Advocate. For the Respondents: ----------

Judgment Text

Rekha Gupta, Presiding Member

The present revision petition has been filed against the judgment dated 31.05.2017 of the Chhattisgarh State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, Raipur (‘the State Commission’) in First Appeal no. FA/2017/ 98.

2. The brief facts of the case as per the petitioner/ complainant are that the petitioner purchased a vehicle Scorpio, Registration no. CG 09 JB 9577, Chassis no. F2H 46645, Engine no. F2H 46645 from Shivnath Automobiles, Kavardha. The petitioner had got financed the said vehicle by Mahindra and Mahindra Financial Services Ltd., Kavardha. The petitioner had purchased the said vehicle from the respondents for his business purposes. The petitioner had made payment for insurance premium of Rs.46,075/- at Shivnath Automobiles, Kavardha. The insurance was done from 21.10.2015 to 20.10.2016 vide policy no. 94698112. The respondents at the time of insurance of the vehicle had assured the petitioner that in case of any accident, damage etc., during the insured period, compensation of the damages will be borne by respondent no.2. On the basis of the assurance, the petitioner trusted and insured his vehicle Scorpio from respondent no. 2. Hence, the respondents were the service provider and the petitioner was the consumer of respondent no. 1. The petitioner was using the said vehicle for his personal use. On 01.01.2016, the petitioner was returning from Bhoramdev Temple to Kavardha, near Raja Navagon, when due to sudden appearance of an animal on the road the driver of the vehicle lost control and the vehicle toppled on the road. The vehicle was damaged to a great extent which was informed verbally by petitioner’s brother Mukesh Patel to the respondents as at the time of the accident, the petitioner was driving the vehicle. At that time, the respondents told Mukesh Patel and the petitioner that as there was no loss of life, there was no need for a police complaint at local police station. On the basis of the advice of the respondents, the petitioner never reported the matter to police. The vehicle was taken to Shivnath Automobiles Service Centre, Durg, Bhillai for repair on 02.01.206 as per the respondent’s instructions. The respondent had assured to return the repaired vehicle at the earliest to the petitioner. The said vehicle was not serviced by the respondent at the workshop specified by them from 02.01.2016 till 18.02.2016. The petitioner had requested, in writing, respondent no. 1 for an early action on the repair request. The petitioner was told by respondent nos. 1 and 2 that he may initially pay for the repair charges on his own, and the respondents may compensate the petitioner for all the expenses pertaining to the repair or services. Trusting their statements, the petitioner paid an amount of Rs.2,21,848/- on his own and received the said vehicle. As mentined, on the date of the accident, the petitioner’s brother Mukesh Patel had informed about the incident to respondents office and had also received complaint no. 1-49 KZDW from the authorised personnel of the respondent’s office. The petitioner was asked to provide the complete documents relating to the insurance claim for the said vehicle as per the insurance policy for payment of related expenses for repair or services. As advised by the respondents, the total expenses for service and repair at the service centre came to Rs.2,21,848/- which was assured to be compensated by the respondents which was not paid by the insurance company to the petitioner till date and that had caused lot of mental, financial and physical loss to the petitioner. The respondents had confirmed verbally even at the time of filing the application for insurance claim for the accidental damages that all the expenses pertaining to the repairs and other expenses of the petitioner for Rs.2,21,848/- would be paid shortly. However, the respondents never compensated for the expenses. On an enquiry, by the petitioner for the pending compensation, no concrete answer was provided by the respondents. Under these circumstances, the petitioner apprehended that the respondents were not interested to pay the compensation of Rs.2,21,848/- as per the policy. This was a lapse of fulfilling duties by the respondents and deficiency of service because of which the petitioner had suffered losses as per the insurance policy for which the respondents were fully responsible, hence, he prayed for the following reliefs:

* Complainant should receive an amount of Rs.2,21,848/- from the opposite parties as compensation;

* As there was deficiency in services by the respondents that has caused loss to the petitioner by way of mental, physical and also loss due to reduced amenities amounts to Rs.50,000/- that needs to be compensated. In addition, the vehicle was not available within the stipulated time for repair that has caused additional loss of Rs.50,000/- as travelling expenses on petitioners own personal work. This also needs to be compensated by the respondents;

* Petitioner should also receive 12% annual interest on the above amount by the respondents till the due date; and

* Expenditure of the dispute and other compensation should also be given by the respondents to the petitioner.

3. The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, Kabirdham (C G) (‘the District Forum’) vide its order dated 02.12.2016 while dismissing the complaint observed as under:

'13. The complainant Vijay Patel in his plea and also in the affidavit has informed that the vehicle Scorpio CG 09 JB 9577, Chassis no. F2H 46655, Engine No. F2F 46645 was purchased from Shivnath Automobiles Kavardha. The registration detail of the vehicle is provided in A 4. A 4 the Engine no. of Car is SJF4G15513 that proves that the complainant has not entered the correct engine number in his application. As per the purchase date of the vehicle is 30.12.2015 and the insurance is also entered on 30.12.2015, whereas as per S no. A 5, the mentioned vehicle is insured by IFFCO TOKIO General Insurance Co. Ltd., from the date 21.10.2015 till 20.10.2016. In this way A 4 and A 5 are mismatch. Also the insurance date was mentioned as 20.10.2015 to 20.10.2016, whereas the purchase date is 30.12.2015. The complainant has not proved how the insurance of the vehicle was done before the date of purchase.

14. The complainant in his plea and his affidavit statements has informed that on the date 01.01.2016, the complainant was returning from Bhoramdev Temple towards Kavardha when suddenly the car lost control as an animal appeared in front of the car. Due to this the car toppled at the side of the road. Due to this car had excessive damage which was driven by Mukesh Patel but the report of the accident was not made to the police station. At the time of accident, the vehicle was driven by Mukesh Patel but his driving licence was not provided. Whereas, as per the complainant’s claim for complaint the driving licence number CG092003000131 which is valid till 09.03.2023 is mentioned. But the complainant has not provided the driving licence. For rightful justice in the case, the copy of driving licence is required. As the driving licence is not provided it cannot be established when the driving licence was issued. In case of driving the vehicle without valid driving licence on the dte of accident, and in case the vehicle faced an accident the insurance company is not liable to pay any compensation and is not responsible.

15. The complainant in his plea and his affidavit has stated that the complainant’s brother Mukesh Patel has informed the opposite parties. On the basis of the information, the representative available at opposite parties office registered the complaint for claim by no. 1-49 KZDW and requested the complainant to provide all claim related documents as per the insurance policy. The claim form was prepared as per the documents for compensation of expenses related to repair of the vehicle. It was assured too that compensation will be paid in full. However, the complainant’s mentioned application in support of this case, A 2 does not carry his signatures. In case the complainant has present the claim form to the insurance company, then what order the insurance company has taken was not mentioned and no supporting document was provided. In relation to this matter, whether the insurance company has accepted the claim or rejected the application is also not evidenced.

16. In the light of the above interpretation, the complainant through his affidavit statements and the witness Mukesh Patel’s statements and the presented documents could not prove that the opposite parties did not fulfil the duties by not paying compensation for claims for the accident repairs for the vehicle Scropio CG 09 JB 9577, Chassis no. F2H 46645 and Engine no. F2H 4665 (SJFG15513) as per the insurance policy or has led to any deficiency in services. Hence in the light of above analysis, the question A is concluded as follows that the complainant has failed to prove question A.

17. The complainant has failed to prove his argument in question A as concluded above. Hence, the complainant is not eligible to receive the compensation or support as per the plea. Therefore, the plea of the complainant is dismissed'.

4. Aggrieved by the order of the District Forum, the petitioner filed an appeal before the State Commission. The State Commission while dismissing the appeal held as under:

'20. From the perspective of correct interpretation, we reach to this conclusion that complainant has failed completely to prove the deficiency in service by the respondents. The orders passed by the District Forum, there is no irregularity or illegality and there is no need for any interference.

21. As mentioned above, the complainant’s plea is eligible to be dismissed due to inconsequential. Hence, the complainant’s plea is dismissed. The order for District Forum dated 02.12.2016 is further reinforced. In the situation of the case, the expenses related to appeal will be borne by the respective parties.'

5. Hence, the present revision petition.

6. We have heard the learned counsel for the petition. He contended that the State Commission had grossly erred in inferring adverse conclusion on account of non-submission of the driving licence of the driver Mukesh Patel. He further contended that the State Commission has failed to appreciate that the incident occurred on 01.01.2016, and that the complainant’s brother Mukesh Patel, who was driving the vehicle, had orally informed the opposite party on its toll free number to the concerned employee who had taken the call and registered the same and gave claim no. 1 – 49 KZDW. No further point was urged.

7. The State Commission in their order while dismissing the appeal has observed as under:

'19. The complainant has presented Document no.2 Motor Claim Form in the list of documents submitted for the case. In the said form, the complainant’s signature is missing and also the signature from the insurance company and their seal is missing. In such a situation, it is not possible to base any decision to reach the truth. The complainant could have provided verification/ affidavit in support of these statements, however, no affidavit was provided by the same. The complainant in relation to the above mentioned statement has not provided any such document that proves that his plea was rejected and pending. For insurance claims, the signed insurance claim forms are a mandatory document and in relation to the car accident, the driving licence of driver and the first information report at the police station are required as also the information to the insurance company. The complainant could not prove that in this case the required procedural compliances are followed. In this situation, the complainant has failed completely to prove that the respondents have caused deficiency in service by not paying the claim compensation for expenses. The District Forum under their order paragraph no. 14, 15 have ordered after reaching a conclusion'.

8. Even as per the revision petition it is an admitted fact that the licence of the driver was not made available to the opposite party. Further, the learned counsel for the petitioner admitted that the claim form was not signed and also there is no proof that the same was dispatched and received by the opposite party.

9. In view of the above, we agree with the lower fora that the petitioner has failed completely to prove the deficiency in service by the respondents.

10. The Hon’ble Supreme Court in Mrs Rubi (Chandra) Dutta vs M/s United India Insurance Co. Ltd., 2011 (

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3) Scale 654 has observed: 'Also, it is to be noted that the revisional powers of the National Commission are derived from Section 21 (b) of the Act, under which the said power can be exercised only if there is some prima facie jurisdictional error appearing in the impugned order, and only then, may the same be set aside. In our considered opinion there was no jurisdictional error or miscarriage of justice, which could have warranted the National Commission to have taken a different view than what was taken by the two Forums. The decision of the National Commission rests not on the basis of some legal principle that was ignored by the Courts below, but on a different (and in our opinion, an erroneous) interpretation of the same set of facts. This is not the manner in which revisional powers should be invoked. In this view of the matter, we are of the considered opinion that the jurisdiction conferred on the National Commission under Section 21 (b) of the Act has been transgressed. It was not a case where such a view could have been taken by setting aside the concurrent findings of two fora.' 11. In view of the foregoing discussion, we find no jurisdictional error or material irregularity in the impugned order which may call for interference in exercise of powers under section 21 (b) of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. Revision petition is, therefore, dismissed with no order as to costs.