The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) has directed vehicle manufacturer Tata Engineering and one of its dealers to refund over Rs 4 lakh to a customer for deficiency of service. The apex consumer commission, while setting aside Maharashtra state commission's order has asked Tata Engineering and Locomotive Company Limited and a dealer Concorde Motors Limited to jointly and severally refund the amount of Rs 4,58,853 to Mumbai resident Late Abhay R Bhatwadekar.
A bench comprising President R K Agrawal and Member M Shreesha awarded a litigation cost of Rs 10,000 along with the refund amount."In the absence of any documentary evidence to substantiate that the car was indeed delivered to the complainant (Bhatwadekar), we are of the considered view that there is a deficiency of service on the part of the manufacturer and the dealer," the commission said in a recent order.
NCDRC, while setting aside the State Commission's order said that as repeatedly the car had gone to the garage for repairs when the subject car was within warranty and had barely done 2,500 kms.Bhatwadekar in May 2000 had booked a Tata Indica car was promised to be delivered on May 15. However, till May 26 the car was not delivered.
The complaint alleged that Bharwadekar refused to receive the delivery of the car as it was not in a road-worthy condition. He alleged that the car had electrical problems. The complaint further alleged that the dealer delivered the car without the consent of Bharwadekar at his premises, contrary to the usual procedure of effective delivery at the showroom. The tribunal noted that no substantial reasons were given by the manufacturer/dealer as to why the car was not taken back even after Bhatwadekar refused to sign the delivery receipt due to defects found in the car.
"It is not understood as to why the dealer did not follow the regular procedure of taking an acknowledgement at the time of delivery," the bench said. Meanwhile, the manufacturer in their written statement said that the vehicle was delivered to Bhatwadekar after rectifying minor repairable defects, but he had refused to give an acknowledgement in writing.