Decided on June 21,2011

Rajarshi Motors Pvt Ltd Respondents


- (1.)THIS appeal has arisen from the judgment dated 29.10.2010 passed by the learned District Forum, West Tripura, Agartala in case No. CC -11 of 2008 whereby the complaint of the appellant against -Tata Motors Ltd. for selling to him a defective vehicle has been dismissed.
(2.)THE short facts may be noticed first. The appellant is an unemployed youth seeking self - employment, Being a driver by profession he proposed to purchase a vehicle to earn his livelihood. On 19.9.2006 he purchased a new Tata diesel mini truck, model No. LPT -407 from Rajarshi Motors Ltd., the authorized dealer of Tata Motors Ltd., the first respondent herein and took delivery on 20.9.2006. The price of the vehicle was 5,59,901. He made initial payment of Rs. 1,12,901 and the rest amount of Rs. 4,47,000 was arranged by taking loan from Tata Finance Ltd., the 3rd respondent herein by way of an hire purchase agreement. Unfortunately, the vehicle showed defects from the very inception. It had to be taken to the. first respondent for repairs on 4.10.2006, 24.10.2006, 1.12.2006, 8.12.2006, 5.2.2007, 25.3.2007, 25.6.2007,, 16.7.2007, 16.8.2007, and 25.8.2007. Within a period of less than a year the vehicle had to be placed for repairs on ten occasions which fact alone prima facie shows the vehicle had certain manufacturing defects. On the last occasion, i.e. on 27.8.2007, the vehicle was found to have major defects, The first respondent expressed their inability to repair the same. Since then the vehicle remained in the custody to that respondent. As a result the appellant could not pay the monthly instalment to the Tata Finance Ltd. to liquidate the loan. He claimed replacement of the vehicle which, however, found no response. As the interest on the loan multiplied for no fault on his part he approached the District Forum for reliefs by way of replacement of the vehicle, and making Tata Motors liable to pay the interest on the loan to the 3rd respondent for the period the vehicle was left without repair. He also prayed for a sum of Rs. 1,50,000 in addition to compensate his loss of income for more than three years and mental anxiety.
(3.)THE Tata Motors Ltd., the manufacturer of the vehicle, preferred not to appear and contest though duly served. The Rajarshi Motors and Tata Finance, however, entered appearance and contested the claim. The Tata Finance has claimed to be not a necessary party as the appellant did not seek any remedy against them. The Rajarshi Motors filed the written statement and made an important admission in para -7 which virtually goes to support the allegation of the complainant. In para -7 at page 4 the said respondent states "on 27.8.2007 some major defects was detected in the engine, oil pump and other vital parts and as such the vehicle could not be repaired by the dealer O.P. No. 1 and till today the said vehicle is lying with the O.P. No. 1". Thereafter the said respondent stated that the complaint of poor pickup and starting problem of the vehicle had been attended thoroughly and rectified. The complainant was informed several times to take the delivery of the vehicle. But he did not turn up causing thereby inconvenience to the dealer. Surprisingly there is no clarification how and whether the major defects in the engine, oil pump and other vital parts could be repaired as it was not within the competence of the dealer to rectify the same. This position has been further confirmed by the Works Manager of Rajarshi Motors in his affidavit -in -chief. His version in the affidavit contradicted the version, of the Rajarshi Motors in the written statement about major defects of the vehicle. According to him there was no major defect in the vehicle. He, however, admitted in para 7 that the fuel pumps of Tata vehicles are supplied by manufacturer BOSCH MICO and whenever there is any problem with fuel pump it is repaired by the said manufacturer company. There is no statement that the said manufacturer had at ail repaired the fuel pump of the vehicle in question. Thus, it is a clear admission of the first respondent that the vehicle had major defects in the engine, fuel pump and other vital parts which could not be repaired by the dealer. This fact alone justifies reluctance of the complainant to take delivery of the vehicle after it was placed for repair of 27.8.2007 for major defects. Admittedly, the vehicle has been in the custody of the dealer since then.
We have heard learned Counsel for the parties.

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