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After completing the entire transaction of purchasing a car for 11 lakhas and add, the subsequent price decrease offer to the public is not amount unfair trade practice and it is not deficiency of service the price of the car is declared as Rs.9,99,999/- in the special offer. Despite that opponent No. 2 has recovered Rs.11,63,876/- from the complainant. The Opponent No.2 has usurped the benefit of special offer and has recovered excess amount of Rs.1,38,877/-. The complainant No.2 has usurped the same. Agreement is over on 3.9.08. Car is delivered to the complainant. Amount has been paid. Full and final payment has been made. Thereafter if any advertisement has been published between 6.9.08 to 9.9.08, the complainant is not entitled to get the benefit. Because the agreement was over and price was paid before that. No special offer was published in newspaper on the dates on which agreement of car was over. The complainant is therefore not entitled to get benefit of offer. It is the say of the complainant that had the Opponent No.2 informed about such offer, the complainant would not have purchased the car as is purchased. He would have purchased the car at a lesser price under the offer. So we do not agree with the contention of complainant that opponents have resorted to unfair trade practice. Because the seller is not bound to declare the secrets of his trade. Again the seller is not bound to inform the consumer about the date of advertisement of the scheme. There are no such rules. If the seller is kept in ban like this then seller cannot do business before the scheme. Under these circumstances, we do not agree with the contention of complainant that Opponent No.2 is bound to inform about future scheme and by not doing so, opponent No.2 has resorted to unfair trade practice.

NATIONAL CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL COMMISSION

NEW DELHI

 

REVISION PETITION NO. 94  OF  2012

(From the order dated 22.09.2011 in Appeal No.491/2010 of Gujarat State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, Ahmedabad)

Shri Shankerlal L. Sachdev, Advocate

Meera, 36/C/A,

Bhuj – Kachchh,

Gujarat                                                                                               …….. Petitioner

Vs.

1. The Managing Director,

Skoda Auto India Pvt. Ltd.

A/1/1, M.I.D.C.,

Five Star Industries Area,

Shendra,

Aurangabad – 431 201

2. The Manager,

Torque Automotive Pvt. Ltd.

G-4, Shapath IV, Opp. Karnavati Club,

S.G. Highway,

Ahmedabad                                                                            …….. Respondents

REVISION PETITION NO. 95  OF  2012

(From the order dated 22.09.2011 in Appeal No.520/10 and Appeal No.491/2010 of Gujarat State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, Ahmedabad)

Shri Shankerlal L. Sachdev, Advocate

Meera, 36/C/A,

Bhuj – Kachchh,

Gujarat                                                                                               …….. Petitioner

Vs.

1. The Manager,

Torque Automotive Pvt. Ltd.

G-4, Shapath IV, Opp. Karnavati Club,

S.G. Highway,

Ahmedabad

2. The Managing Director,

Skoda Auto India Pvt. Ltd.

A/1/1, M.I.D.C.,

Five Star Industries Area,

Shendra,

Aurangabad – 431 201                                                         …….. Respondents

BEFORE:

HON’BLE MR. JUSTICE R.C. JAIN, PRESIDING MEMBER

HON’BLE MR.S.K.NAIK, MEMBER

For the Complainant            :     Mr. Aditya Narain, Ms. Astha Tyagi and

Ms. Suchi Singh, Advocates.

PRONOUNCED ON 09th MAY, 2012.

 

ORDER

PER JUSTICE R.C.JAIN, PRESIDING MEMBER

 

Challenge in these revision petitions is to the common order dated 22.9.2011 passed by the Gujarat State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, Ahmedabad (for short “the State Commission”) in Appeal No.491 of 2010.  The appeals before the State Commission were filed against the order dated 19.3.2010 passed by the District Forum, Kachchh-Bhuj in Complaint Case No. 245 of 2008, thereby allowing the complaint of the complainant and directing the opposite parties to pay a sum of Rs.12,57,150/- to the complainant and upon payment of such amount, the complaint was directed to handover possession of the car in question and to execute the necessary documents required in connection with the transfer of the vehicle in favour of the opposite parties.  The District Forum also awarded a compensation of Rs.50,000/- to the complainant towards mental shock and harassment suffered by the complainant.

2.      Aggrieved by the said order, Skoda India Pvt. Ltd., the manufacturer of the car filed Appeal No.520 of 2010 and M/s. Torque Automotive Pvt. Ltd., the dealer/distributor of the car filed Appeal No.491 of 2010 for setting aside the findings and order passed by the District Forum.  The State Commission on consideration of the matter and going by the pleas put forth on behalf of the manufacturer and dealer/distributor of the car in question has, however, allowed the appeal and set aside the order passed by the District Forum and as a consequence dismissed the complaint filed by the complainant.

3.      Aggrieved by the said order, the original complainant has filed these petitions.

4.      We have heard Mr. Aditya Narain, learned Counsel representing the complainant/petitioner and have considered his submissions.  Mr. Narain would assail the findings and orders passed by the State Commission primarily on the ground that the same are not based on correct and proper appreciation of the facts and circumstances of the case and least the evidence and material brought on record.  He submits that the chain of events which followed w.e.f. 2.9.2009 to 9.9.2009 would point out the adoption of unfair trade practice by the opposite parties/respondents inasmuch as the dealer/distributor of the car had shown undue haste in effecting the delivery of the car in question to the complainant on 3.9.2008 even without its registration with the concerned Motor Transport Authority of the State and by delivering the car on a temporary registration number which was against the provisions of the Motor Vehicle Act, as no vehicle can be brought on road without its registration under the Motor Vehicle Act.  That apart, it is pointed out that the opposite party/dealer has manipulated certain documents, particularly, in regard to the insurance of the vehicle.  We have noted  these submissions simply to be rejected because we find that all these pleas were urged from the side of the petitioner before the State Commission in response to the pleas of the opposite parties/dealers in appeals.  The State Commission has given its consideration to these pleas and rejected them by giving cogent reasons as under:

“10.   The complainant has purchased Skoda Octavia Ambient Car for Rs.11,63,876.00 after deducting rebate of Rs.25,000/- on 3.3.2008.  The complainant deposited to sum of Rs.1,77,873.00 in the account of Opponent No.2 at Bhuj.  The complainant has obtained Insurance Cover for the period from 3.9.08 to 2.9.09.  The Opponent No.2 had delivered the car. The complainant had applied for loan to HDFC Bank, Gandhidham.  A loan of Rs.9,61,039.00 was sanctioned on 2.8.08 (sic 2.9.08).   Disbursement order cum-delivery order was sent to Opponent No.2 by the Bank.  The same was delivered to Sanjiv Rana by Shri Hiren Suchdev – the son of the complainant. The complainant has thus paid full amount to opponent No.2, has taken delivery of the car from opponent No.2.  The sale transaction of the car was over accordingly.  No dispute has been raised in this respect.  At the relevant time, it was decided to give rebate of Rs.25,000/-.  The said rebate has been given to the complainant.

 

11.    It appears from the original complaint of the complainant that it is the contention of the complainant that the price of the car is declared as Rs.9,99,999/- in the special offer.  Despite that opponent No. 2 has recovered Rs.11,63,876/- from the complainant. The Opponent No.2 has usurped the benefit of special offer and has recovered excess amount of Rs.1,38,877/-. The complainant No.2 has usurped the same.  Agreement is over on 3.9.08.  Car is delivered to the complainant.  Amount has been paid.  Full and final payment has been made.  Thereafter if any advertisement has been published between 6.9.08 to 9.9.08, the complainant is not entitled to get the benefit.  Because the agreement was over and price was paid before that.  No special offer was published in newspaper on the dates on which agreement of car was over.  The complainant is therefore not entitled to get benefit of offer.  It is the say of the complainant that had the Opponent No.2 informed about such offer, the complainant would not have purchased the car as is purchased. He would have purchased the car at a lesser price under the offer.  So we do not agree with the contention of complainant that opponents have resorted to unfair trade practice.  Because the seller is not bound to declare the secrets of his trade.  Again the seller is not bound to inform the consumer about the date of advertisement of the scheme. There are no such rules.  If the seller is kept in ban like this then seller cannot do business before the scheme.  Under these circumstances, we do not agree with the contention of complainant that Opponent No.2 is bound to inform about future scheme and by not doing so, opponent No.2 has resorted to unfair trade practice.

 

12.    The insurance of above car has been obtained from Bhuj. The period of insurance is mentioned as 3.9.08 to 2.9.09.  In cover note the dates are changed and in that date is shown as 8.9.08 in place of 2.9.08.  The period of insurance has been changed to 2.9.08 to 7.9.09 in place of 3.9.08 to 2.9.09.  It is the contention of complainant that the benefit under the advertisement dated 9.9.08 has been usurped by Opponent No.2. We do not agree with this contention because there is no evidence to show that who has changed the date, in Cover note or that the Opponent No.2 has changed the same. Again even if the dates are changed, the advertisement was for the period from 9.9.08 to 17.9.08.  Meaning thereby that the customer who purchases the can during that period can get benefit.  If Opponent No.2 wanted to take benefit, he would not have changed date to 8.9.08 under any circumstances but they would have tried to take benefit of advertisement by tampering with date as 9.9.08.  But such attempt has not been made by Opponent No.2.  There is no dispute that the scheme of less price was in respect of car that may be sold on 9.9.08. As per the say of complainant, the agreement was over on 3.9.08 and so the complainant cannot get benefit of advertisement published on 9.9.08.  Over and above that there  is no evidence to show that change in such dates of cover note are made by opponent and opponent no. 2 cannot get benefit by such change. Therefore we do not agree with the finding of learned Forum that as Opponent No. 2  has not offered proper explanation, adverse inference can be drawn against opponent no. 2 and that the opponent no. 2 has received the benefit of the scheme of 9.9.08.

 

13.    The car is sold to the complainant on 3.9.08. Even if registration has been effected on 8.9.08, neither complainant nor Opponent No.2 can take benefit of scheme of 9.9.08. Neither the complainant nor the Opponent No. 2 can get benefit of scheme of 9.9.08 because of delay caused in registration as mentioned hereinabove.  We therefore do not agree in the finding of learned Forum that there is delay in registration”.

 

 

5.      As regards the contention of the complainant that opposite parties have resorted to the adoption of the unfair trade practice, the State Commission rejected the same by stating that the complainant had purchased the car with full knowledge about its price, quality and other features as on the date of delivery, therefore, the dealer could not be said to have committed any deficiency in service or having resorted to unfair trade practice because some days later, the manufacturer of the car came out with a scheme for the sale of the car for a limited period of about 10 days effective from 9.9.2009 at a lesser price than the price at which the complainant had purchased the vehicle in question  on 3.9.2009, i.e., a week prior to the floating of the said scheme.  In our view also, going by the entirety of the facts and circumstances of the case, the sale of the car in question having been completed on 3.9.2009 itself after the complainant paid the entire price after arranging the same from the bank, he cannot be heard saying that the opposite party had adopted unfair trade practice because later on the price of the car in question was reduced by more than a lakh of rupees.  The argument about registration of the car subsequent to the date of sale with the Motor Transport Authority is also of no avail because many a times cars are delivered on the request of the owner with the temporary registration number or when the owner takes the responsibility of getting the car registered with the Motor Transport Authority.

6.      Learned Counsel for the petitioner has also placed on record judgment of the Apex Court in the case of Om Prakash Vs. Assistant Engineer, Haryana Agro Industries Corporation Ltd. & Anr. – (1994) 3 SCC 504, which has been decided on its own facts and cannot be applied to the facts and circumstances of the present case.

7.      It appears to us that by filing the present complaint the complainant had attempted to misuse the jurisdiction of the Consumer Fora established under the provisions of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. The said statute has been enacted by the Parliament with the sole object of providing a legitimate succor to the bonafide consumers who have been wronged at the hands of the seller/manufacturers of the goods and provider of services.

8.      In the case in hand, what has surprised us is the order passed by the District Forum in this case granting a relief like payment of Rs.12,57,150/- and compensation of Rs.50,000/- to the complainant.  Even if the District Forum could take a view that the opposite parties had committed some act of deficiency, the kind of relief granted by the District Forum to the complainant was certainly not called for and could not be justified in any event.  The State Commission has given cogent reasons as to why the opposite parties could not be held guilty of any deficiency in service or unfair trade practice on the part of the opposite parties and we have no reasons to differ with the same.  We find the findings and the order of the State Commission are eminently justified in the facts and circumstances of the case and on the basis of material on record.  The order does not suffer from any illegality, material irregularity much less any jurisdictional error which warrants interference by this Commission in exercise of its supervisory jurisdiction under Clause (b) of Section 21 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986.

9.      In view of the above, the revision petitions are devoid of any merits and are accordingly dismissed with no order as to costs.

…………………………….

( R. C. JAIN, J. )

PRESIDING MEMBER

 

 

…………………..……….

     ( S.K. NAIK)

MEMBER

K

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