Case BriefsTribunals/Commissions/Regulatory Bodies

National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC): A Division Member Bench of Dr S.M. Kantikar, Presiding Member, Dinesh Singh, Member, dismissed a revision petition filed against the order of the State Commission, whereby the petitioner was ordered to pay compensation to the respondent for deficiency in services.

The main issue that arose before the Commission was whether the complaint filed by the respondent was within the period of limitation.

The Commission observed that the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 (COPRA) was enacted to provide an additional remedy to the consumer apart from other remedies available to them under different laws. The respondent herein was well within the ambit of “consumer” as per the provisions of COPRA and hence it had rightly approached the district forum for redressal of its grievances. The Commission further observed that Section 24A of the COPRA talks about the period of limitation in filing a complaint and it says that the complaint shall be filed within 2 years from the date on which the cause of action arose. It is pertinent to note that the instant case involved an issue of carriage by air and there is a separate enactment which governs the law related to carriage by air i.e. Carriage By Air Act, 1972 (1972 Act). Rule 30 of the Second Schedule of 1972 Act says that right to claim damages gets extinguished if an action is not brought against the erring party within 2 years from the date of arrival at the destination. Clearly in case if there arises a conflict between Section 24 A of the COPRA and Rule 30 of the 1972 Act, then Rule 30 shall prevail since the 1972 Act was enacted under Article 253 of the Constitution of India to implement an international convention.

The Commission held that as per the ruling of the Supreme Court in the case of Sahwney Export House (P) Ltd. v. Pakistan International Airlines, First Appeal No. 283 of 1992, the 1972 Act shall prevail over the provisions of COPRA if the case pertains to carriage by air and there is a question of limitation involved, even if the complaint is filed under the provisions of the COPRA. Resultantly, the Commission allowed the revision petition and set aside the order of the state commission.[Pakistan International Airlines v. Dar Trading Co., 2018 SCC OnLine NCDRC 458, order dated 03-12-2018]

Case BriefsDistrict Court

District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, Ganjam Behrampur: The Bench comprising of Karuna Kar Nayak (President) and Sri Purna Chandra Tripathy (Member), partly allowed a case filed against O.P i.e. “AMAZON”  for ‘deficiency in services’.

In the present matter, the complainant Supriyo Mahapatra had filed a consumer complaint under Section 12 of Consumer Protection Act, 1986 for ‘deficiency in services’ against AMAZON.  The complainant had placed an order for an ASUS X450-cawx214d 14 INCH Laptop for an amount of Rs 190/- against the original price of Rs. 23,499/- by offering a discount of Rs 23,309/-, on placing the order for the same with the option of ‘cash on delivery’, the complainant received a confirmation on his e-mail id and further on acceptance of the order, the complainant was assured with its delivery of the product soon. Though in accordance with the facts as stated, the complainant’s order was cancelled after a couple of hours and he was intimated for the same through a phone call from the customer service department of O.P. Further, the O.P. in response to the reason for cancellation stated that there was some ‘Pricing issue’ due to which the order stands cancelled.

The primary issue that arose in the matter was due to no-response on behalf of the O.P after continuous efforts made by the complainant through customer care service and e-mail in regard to a valid reason for cancellation of his order, which finally forced the complainant to issue a legal notice, which again was not responded by the O.P.

For the above-stated submissions, the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum stated that the “O.P. was not only negligent in rendering proper service to the complainant but also involved in unfair trade practice; as such we hold there is deficiency in service by O.P.”. Therefore, complainant’s case was partly allowed and O.P. was directed to pay Rs 10,000 for mental agony as compensation and Rs 2,000/- for the cost of litigation. [Supriyo Ranjan Mahapatra v. Amazon Development Centre India (P) Ltd., Consumer Complaint No. 42 of 2015, Order dated 05-09-2018]