Decided on July 28,2006

Balbir Krishan Sharma Respondents


- (1.) THE limited dispute raised in this appeal preferred against the order dated 19.4.2005 directing the appellant to pay a lump sum amount of Rs. 86,550 in respect of the insurance claim of jewellery against theft with interest @ 9% besides Rs. 2,000 as compensation for harassment and Rs. 500 as cost of litigation is with regard to the details of the jewellery given in the Proposal Form at the time of insurance and items alleged to have been stolen from the house of the respondent.
(2.) THERE is no dispute that the respondent obtained a household insurance policy from the appellant for covering the risk of loss of various household goods including the items of jewellery after paying the requisite premium. A theft took place at the residence of the respondent on 16.11.2003 in respect of which a case was registered with the police under Sections 454/380, IPC. Since the respondent did not have the actual idea about the exact details of the stolen goods as all the goods in the house were lying in disarray, he initially submitted a loss of 150 gms. jewellery but subsequently, on verification, he replaced his claim to 250 gms. The claim was repudiated by the appellant on the basis of the report of the Investigator/Surveyor that the jewellery alleged to have been stolen were not covered against the insurance policy. Feeling aggrieved the respondent filed the instant complaint and was successful in obtaining the impugned order.
(3.) SINCE the appellant repudiated the claim of the respondent mainly on the premise that the articles alleged to have been stolen did not figure in the insured goods, the dispute can be determined only by comparing the articles mentioned in the Proposal Form and the articles stolen from the house, the details of which were given by the respondent in the revised claim filed with the appellant. The gold jewellery insured by the appellant with a silverware was as under : Item Description Sum assured in Rs. Gold 130 gms. Churi 50,000 bangles and Kara Chains/ 2 Nos. 70 gms. 30,000 pendents Rings 5 Nos. 40 gms. 20,000 Gold Bangles 40 gms. 20,000 Bangles Jewellery Chain 4 Nos. 25,000 (other items) 50 gms. Silverware One set 2,000 In the claim filed by the respondent, the details of the stolen jewellery in respect of which the report was lodged with the police are as under : (i) 2 Kara weighing about 60 gms. (ii) 4 Churis weighing about 50 gms. (iii) 1 pendent set weighing about 70 gms. (iv) 1 chain weighing about 60 gms. (v) 2 rings weighing about 10 gms. If we compare this list with the list of the insurance policy, we find that the total weight of stolen goods, bangles and Karas comes to be 110 gms. against 130 gms. insured articles. Similarly in the item No. 2 against chain with pendent the weight shown was 70 gms. whereas in the report one pendent weighing about 70 gms. has been shown and one chain. Against 4 gold chains weighing 50 gms. one chain is mentioned in the police report. The weight of one stolen chain has been shown as 60 gms. Against 5 Nos. rings weighing 40 gms. mentioned in the insurance policy, the theft of two rings weighing 10 gms. has been shown. After comparison we find that the total weight of the stolen ornaments comes to 220 gms. and not 250 gms. The contention of the Counsel for the appellant that reliance should be placed on the first report and not the second report, which is an after -thought is incorrect. When such occurrence takes place, a report is lodged with the police of the first instance as to the details of stolen goods and valuables like gold ornaments. When the actual loss is assessed exact details are always little different of the ornaments.;

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