M.S. Janarthanam, President
1. This matter came up for admission before us today. We heard the arguments of learned Counsel Mr. Sugumar R. Rajulu. We also perused the complaint and also the documents filed alongwith it. Such a perusal reveals in pith and substance the following factors :
(1) the complainant viz., M/s. White House Process Private Limited which is running a dyeing and pro-cessing plant at Pudupakkam, Kelambakkam, required the services of M/s. Sri Mahalakshmi Engineering Industries, the opposite party, for the installation of a mechanical evaporator costing about Rs. 6,34,906/- in order to comply with the directions issued by the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board;
(2) the complainant, it appears, paid a sum of Rs. 5,71,411/- to the opposite party towards the supply and erection;
(3) as per the terms of payment between the complainant and the opposite party, the balance amount of 10% would be released only after the successful commissioning of the equipment;
(4) the equipment installed by the opposite party, it is said, was not at all functioning properly and despite the opposite party having been contacted many a time to rectify the defect in the said equipment, the defects pointed out were not at all rectified by the opposite party;
(5) consequently, the complainant, in order to avoid embarrassing situation in facing the Authorities of the Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board, themselves effected the necessary and requisite repairs by incurring a sum of Rs. 2,06,670/-;
(6) this act of the opposite party, it is said, in such circumstances, is deficiency in service.
Alleging the factors as above, the complainant knocked at the doors of this Commission by preferring the present action in the shape of a complaint demanding damages in a sum of Rs. 10 lakhs which includes the amount of Rs. 2,06,670/- spent towards repairs for the equipment by themselves.
2. Even assuming that there is deficiency in service on the part of the opposite party, we rather feel that the complaint as filed before this Commission has to necessarily go before the competent District Forum. The reasons are rather very obvious. Even according to him, the amount spent for effecting repairs is to the tune of Rs. 2,06,670/-. Deducting this amount by way of repairs from the total claim of Rs. 10 lakhs claimed as damages as prayed for by him, the amount sought to be arrived at is Rs. 7,93,330/-. For claiming such a huge damage, no details or particulars had been furnished in the complaint. Even assuming he is entitled to certain damages, we rather feel that on the facts and in the circumstances of the case, the damages that he would be entitled plus the amount he had spent for effecting repairs to the equipment, cannot go beyond the value of the pecuniary jurisdiction of the District Forum. We are of the view that because no Court-fee is payable by the complainant, he has escalated the damages in such a way to attrac
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t the pecuniary jurisdiction of this Commission. 3. In this view of the matter, the complaint is returned and the complainant is directed to present the complaint before the competent District Forum within 15 days from today, of course after making the necessary amendments in the complaint. Complaint returned.