Company who purchased Four Units in Complex for commercial purpose, is not “consumer”

National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC): While observing that a construction company which purchased four units in a complex purely for commercial purpose cannot be called as “consumer”, NCDRC dismissed a complaint filed by a construction company before State Commission seeking refund of the amounts deposited by it as sale consideration for the units, noting that the said complaint was not maintainable before consumer foras. The Commission further gave liberty to the Complainant to approach any appropriate forum, except a Consumer Fora, for redressal of its grievance against the appellant EMAAR MGF Land Ltd. Said order of the Commission was pronounced in an appeal filed by EMAAR MGF Land Ltd. challenging an ex parte order of Delhi State Commission passed in favour of Banga Constructions Pvt Ltd. which not being satisfied with the progress in construction of a complex, in which four units were purchased by it, filed complaint before State Commission and sought for refund of sale consideration. “We are of the opinion that the said units had been acquired by the Respondent Company purely for commercial purpose and therefore, by no stretch of imagination, the Respondent Company could be said to be a Consumer within the meaning of Section 2 (1); (d) of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986.  It is trite that the words ‘for any commercial purpose’ used in the Section means that the goods purchased or services hired are used or proposed to be used in any activity directly intended to generate profit.  It is manifest that the four units booked by the Respondent Company with the Appellant were meant to be used in some activity directly intended to generate profit.  We are unable to hold that the four units were acquired by the Respondent for earning its livelihood by means of self-employment falling within the ambit of explanation to the said Sub-section,” the Commission noted. (EMAAR MGF Land Ltd. v. Banga Constructions Pvt. Ltd., 2015 SCC OnLine NCDRC 8, decided on March 24, 2015)

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