Unlike cellular services where consumers have the option to switch between different mobile companies, LPG consumers would have the limited option of changing only their dealers, not the oil company
New Delhi: Cooking gas consumers can now change their dealers as the government has launched LPG portability scheme on the lines of mobile phone services, reports PTI.
The complainant informed the court that she suffered immense mental stress and agony due to the conduct of the company
Thane: Dismissing a complaint by an investor using the services of a share broking company, the Thane District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has held that an investor cannot be treated as a consumer, as he is indulging in trading for commercial purposes, reports PTI.
One Chayya V Madane from New Panvel had enrolled herself with the India Infoline, for availing their services in trading in shares. Accordingly, she had opened a demat account and was using the services of the firm for trading.
Thane Consumer Forum president Jyoti A Mandhle and member Smita L Desai passed the order on 9th January on a complaint by Madane against India Infoline.
In her complaint, Madane said that in March 2008, she had opened a demat account with India Infoline for selling and purchase of shares.
She deposited Rs60,555 with the company and Re0.05 (paise) was to be taken as brokerage for trading. It was noticed by the complainant that instead of charging Re0.05 (paise), they charged Re 0.10 (paise) as brokerage.
On 6 June 2008 an email was sent by the complainant to the company to stop the transaction going into the account but despite that, the latter continued the trading transaction and disposed amount from her account.
On 2 August 2008, she sent a letter to the company saying that the amount Rs60,000 should be reversed back into her account with interest or else she will take legal action against them.
She submitted that as no response was given by the company, she sent a notice on 20 September 2008 to the manager of the company saying that the deposited amount in her account should be reversed into her account with interest.
The complainant informed the court that she suffered immense mental stress and agony due to the conduct of the company.
However, the trading company contested the complaint and told the court that “as the complainant is taking services from us for commercial purposes for making profit by trading in stock market, so she is not a consumer and as the complainant is not a consumer, this complaint should be dismissed with heavy cost.”
The respondent also stated that any disputes arising between the parties in respect of this agreement of any contract dealings or transactions or interpretation or construction of the agreement are subject to the arbitration procedure, as prescribed by the Exchange provisions, so the complainant has no right to seek any relief for want of jurisdictions.
They also said that the object behind opening the account was commercial and in view of the terms in Section 2(1)d of Consumer Protection Act, 1986, parties who avail services are excluded from the definition of the consumer and therefore, the complainant is not a consumer and thus, her complaint is not maintainable under Consumer Protection Act.
In its order, the Thane District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum held that, “The complainant has not made out any case under section 2(1)(d) of the Consumer Protection Act 1986 to the effect that such trading is for her own employment and earning her livelihood, therefore she being not a consumer within the meaning of Consumer Protection Act, the dispute is not a consumer dispute.”
“From the facts of the present case and the aforesaid discussion, we hold that the complainant has availed services for commercial purposes and therefore the complainant is not a consumer as defined under Consumer Protection Act,” the form added.
A District Forum in Gujarat ordered the post office to pay Dinesh C Parikh Rs1,01,565 with 9% interest from 4 November 2009, the date the postal department refused to return his fixed deposit or pay interest as it claimed he was not eligible to invest in the scheme
Dinesh C Parikh, a resident of Ahmedabad, retired from a government insurance company in March 2004 and deposited the Rs1 lakh he received on retirement at the Navarangpura Head Post Office under a scheme for senior citizens. As per the scheme, he was eligible to receive interest quarterly at the rate of 9% per year for the next five years. He did receive the interest every quarter, but when he asked the post office to return the principal amount with last quarter’s interest, the authorities refused. In fact, they not only refused to return the deposit and the interest, but asked him to return the interest he had been paid over the years, too. The post office said that, as per the rules of the scheme, he was not eligible to open the deposit account meant for senior citizens and was, therefore, not liable to return the interest already paid.
Dinesh then approached Consumer Education and Research Society (CERS), which filed a case in this regard in Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, Ahmedabad, and sought payment of the principal along with interest.
During the hearing, the advocate of the opponent argued that at the time of opening the account, Dinesh was not eligible for the scheme, but his account was opened due to oversight. However, considering the merits of the case, the forum ruled in the favor of the complainant and ordered the post office authorities to pay Rs1,01,565 with 9% interest from 4 September 2009 until realisation of the payment. The forum also ordered the department to pay Rs3000 towards the mental agony faced by the complainant and Rs.1500 towards the litigation cost.