Decided on May 14,2010

Tata Motors Ltd And Ors Appellant
Laik Ram S/O Sh Mohi Ram And Ors Respondents


- (1.) APPELLANT is aggrieved from the order passed by District Forum, Shimla, Camp at Nahan, dated 6.12.2006 in Complaint No. 59/2004. While allowing this complaint, it has been ordered as under : - 6. " As a sequel of the above, we hereby allow this complaint exparte and direct the OP No.3 -Tata Engineering and Locomotive Co. to replace the defective chassis of the vehicle belonging to the complainant within a new one which is functional and operational, within a period of forty five days from the date of receipt of copy of this order. OP No.3 shall also pay a sum of Rs. 5,000/ - as compensation to the complainant for causing inconvenience and harassment. In case, OP No.3 is not in a position to comply with this order, in that event, it shall be liable to refund the cost of the chassis amounting to Rs. 4,41,098/ - alongwith interest at the rate of 9% per annum with effect from the date of filing of the complaint, i.e. 10.6.2005 till actual payment is made, subject to return of defective vehicle, i.e. Tata Diesel Chassis Model SFC 407 CLB TURBO (TWIN TYRE) within the same time as ordered supra. The litigation costs are quantified at Rs. 1500/ - to be shared by the OPs in equal measure. In case OP No.3 fails to comply with this order within the stipulated period, in that event it shall also be liable to pay a further sum of Rs. 10,000/ - as punitive damages to the complainant. With these directions, the complaint stands disposed of accordingly."
(2.) MR . Shah, learned counsel for the appellant submitted that the impugned order is the result of complete mis -reading, as well as non -consideration of the vital facts which were duly established on the basis of the material on record produced by his clients' authorised dealer -respondent No.2. Further according to him, in case of a manufacturing defect respondent was bound to first establish it by some expert evidence. Fact remains that in the absence of any expert evidence the impugned order cannot be upheld. With a view to support the case of his client, Sh. Shah referred to the affidavit of Mr. Sushant, Works Manager of respondent No.2 from whom the vehicle in question was purchased by respondent No.1, as also of Mr. Anil Sikand, partner of the said respondent.
(3.) ALL these pleas were contested by Mr. Verma, learned counsel for respondent No.1. Per him this is a clear cut case of unfair trade practice having been indulged into by the appellant, as well as by respondent No.2 being manufacturer and authorised sales dealer, respectively of the vehicle which is subject matter of dispute in this appeal. Thus according to him the impugned order calls for no interference, he therefore prayed for dismissal of this appeal with cost. Vehicle manufactured by the appellant, and having been sold by its authorised dealer respondent No.2 on 24.10.2002, vide bill Bo. 496 for Rs. 4,42,978/ - to respondent No.1 is not in dispute between the parties. According to respondent No.1 it was having frequent break downs. On 21.4.2003, respondent No.2 repaired it after it had broken down. It was then noticed that chassis of the vehicle had started developing cracks so patching was done in order to keep the vehicle on road. There were break downs again on 22.7.2003 and 15.11.2003. In the first instance repair was carried out by respondent No.3. But on the second occasion as per respondent No.1, when he requested the respondent No. 3 for repairing the chassis, this respondent refused. Reason given as per version of the respondent No.1 was, that as the vehicle required major repairs, so it will ask for good will claim, then only needful will be done. But he got no response from respondents No. 2 and 3. On 23.1.2004 he asked for warranty replacement, but respondent No.3 declined.;

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