Decided on October 21,2008

Dhiraj Prakash Hawaldar Respondents


- (1.) THIS is an appeal filed by the Oriental Insurance Co. Ltd./original O.P. against the judgment and award passed by District Consumer Forum, Kolhapur in Consumer Complaint No. 386 of 2006 dated 7.2.2008, whereby while allowing the complaint, O.P. Insurance Company has been directed to pay compensation of Rs. 1 lakh to the complainant with interest @ 9% p.a. from 19.7.2006 and also directed to pay Rs. 2,500 towards mental agony and Rs. 1,000 towards cost.
(2.) FACTS to the extent material may be stated as under: Complainant had filed consumer complaint alleging that he was owner of Ford Icon No. MH -04 -AW -6737 and he had taken insurance cover from O.P. Company for Rs. 1,50,000. Policy period was 16.1.2006 to 15.1.2007. On 25.1.2006, on Kolhapur -Pune Road near Village Kini, there was an accident to his vehicle and vehicle was damaged in the said accident. Complainant gave intimation to the Insurance Company. Insurance Company's representative came on the spot and made spot survey. Complainant lodged insurance claim with the O.P. Company Complainant thereafter sold the vehicle on "as is where is basis" and recovered Rs. 50,000 by sale of the said vehicle. This was informed to the Insurance Company. Thereafter complainant requested Insurance Company to pay the amount of Rs. 1 lakh. However, O.P. Company by letter dated 19.7.2006 repudiated the claim on the ground that complainant had taken two policies, one from United India Insurance Company and another from Oriental Insurance Co. Ltd. According to complainant, he had taken insurance cover only from Oriental Insurance Co. Ltd. and not from any other Insurance Company Therefore, claim was wrongly repudiated by the Insurance Company and as such, he filed consumer complaint against Oriental Insurance Co. Ltd. and claimed compensation of Rs. 1 lakh with interest @ 12% p.a. plus Rs. 10,000 towards mental agony and also prayed for cost of the proceedings.
(3.) O .P. was duly served with the summons of the Forum. O.P. filed written statement and affidavit. In the written statement, Insurance Company pleaded that before taking policy from it, complainant had already insured his Ford Icon with United India Insurance Company and once it was known to it, as per India Motor Tariff, subsequent policy purchased by the complainant from Oriental Insurance Co. Ltd. stood automatically cancelled and, therefore, company pleaded that it was not liable to reimburse the amount to the complainant towards compensation claimed by the complainant in view of accidental vehicle. Company pleaded that complainant had tried to deceive it by concealing material fact that he had already taken insurance cover for the vehicle from United India Insurance Company and, therefore, claim was rightly repudiated, asserted O.P. in its written statement. In support of the written statement, O.P. company produced RTO certificate to show that said vehicle was earlier insured with United India Insurance Co. Ltd. On considering affidavits and documents placed on record by rival parties, Forum below brushed aside the objection taken by the Insurance Company and held that M/s. Oriental Insurance Company failed to establish that complainant had insured his Ford Icon No. MH -04 -AW -6737 earlier with United India Insurance Company and that complainant had tried to deceive it. Complainant on the other hand, on affidavit told the Forum that he had not purchased two policies one from United India Insurance Company and other from O.P. To this affidavit, no reply was given by the Original Insurance Company Ltd. and complainant also informed the Forum that Unite India Insurance Co. Ltd. was asked to give details of the policy, which he allegedly purchased for his Ford Icon. But company did not give details thereof. Hence relying on complainant's affidavit and documents placed on record, Forum below was pleased to allow the complaint partly and awarded an amount of Rs. 1 lakh to the complainant towards insurance cover with interest @ 9% p.a. As such Oriental Insurance Company has filed this appeal.;

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