You should never accept ‘NO’ as an answer in any situation, when once you are convinced that you are right. You should fight till you succeed! I wish to narrate hereunder one of my own personal experiences, to drive home the point, as to how the ‘Effort Never Dies!’

As all of us know that the Consumer courts are established with the main objective of providing speedy and simple redressal of consumer disputes through summary trial. The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 clearly states that every complaint shall be heard as expeditiously as possible and endeavour shall be made to decide the complaint within a period of three months. Here is a classic example to know as to how expeditiously the justice is being done and what sort of justice is being done in the Consumer Courts.

  • A particular consumer complaint filed by me (CC NO: 47/2012), against a mighty Central Government Organisation – {Central Government Employees Welfare Housing Organisation, New Delhi – (CGEWHO), constructing houses for the welfare of the Central Government employees throughout the country on no profit no loss basis}, demanding payment of interest on the huge amounts of my  deposits retained with them for years together, on my withdrawal from the scheme, because of  their miserable failure in handing over a Dwelling Unit within the assured time limit, (They had a track record of delaying 14 out of 24 projects completed by them as per the information I obtained from them under RTI Act) in their Kendriya Vihar – III Hyderabad Project, was dismissed by the Ranga Reddy District Forum, Hyderabad on an untenable ground concluding that “there is no deficiency of service.”
  • As I sincerely believed that I had a very strong case, I challenged the order of the District Forum, before the AP State Commission, Hyderabad (FA NO: 468/2013), which has concluded that “viewed from any angle there has been deficiency in service.” and awarded Rs.20,000/- as a compensation and also Rs.3,000/- towards costs to me. 
  • Though I was happy that my stand was vindicated in the State Commission, I was not that happy with the paltry amount of compensation awarded by it. And their observation that it would be just and reasonable to compensate me on all counts was an irritant. Hence, I had to challenge the order of the State Commission before the National Commission, New Delhi (RP NO: 4704/2013) praying for grant of reasonable amount of compensation. The National Commission was pleased to conclude that “the compensation granted by State Commission is not adequate” and award a compensation that worked out to about Rs.2,20,000/- under different heads.

I cherish this success forever, not because it made me richer by a few chips but because I succeeded in challenging the high-handed behavior of an adamant Organisation and in establishing deficiency in their service. I should say that this miracle did not happen that easily or a day sooner. I had to pay heavily on many counts as explained hereunder, for making this success a reality. I had to take a lot of pains by straining every nerve of mine for effectively defending my case at different levels

  • in preparing the complaints, the counter affidavits and in presenting the oral and written arguments very meticulously all by myself personally;
  • in paying innumerable visits personally, to the Consumer courts at different levels, travelling by the public transport, despite my ill health, on the day of every adjournment, granted on flimsy grounds;
  • in facing the cynical comments from all the members of my family, friends and relatives for my waging an unending serious legal battle for such a long time, over such a trivial matter in their view; and
  • in subjecting myself to untold sufferings and mental agony for about 4 years. There were occasions of my cursing my own self in silence for having entered in to this long drawn dirty battle, but never losing faith in myself.

What a travesty of justice!!!

  • The District Forum says out right that “There is no deficiency in service” at all.
  • The State Commission though says very categorically that “viewed from any angle there is deficiency in service” unfortunately, quite arbitrarily and quite un-scientifically awards only a petty amount of Rs.20,000/- as compensation, without even giving any reasoning as to the basis of their arriving at that ridiculously low amount. The funniest part of the order is their qualifying that they were “….of the considered view that a sum of Rs.20,000/- would be just and reasonable to compensate the appellant on all counts.” which was hardly sufficient to compensate me on any single count even, not to speak of compensating me on all counts. This observation is nothing but adding insult to the injury and provoked me to challenge their order. 
  • And the National Commission concluded that “the compensation granted by State Commission is not adequate” and also was pleased to increase the compensation from mere Rs.20,000/- to about Rs.2,20,000/- (a whopping 1100% increase!!!). I had reconciled with the order of the National Commission, even though the compensation awarded by the National Commission too was not actually up to my expectations and satisfaction, for my own valid and justifiable reasons, though it was certainly, somewhat reasonable, in the background of the orders of the lower courts. I was actually looking forward to the graceful implementation of the order of the National Commission by the Respondent Organisation, hoping that wisdom would have dawned on them, to put an end to their grubby game, at least after establishment of their deficiency in service Unfortunately, it did not happen until I again proceeded against them by filing an Execution Application (EA NO: 29/2015). Alas! Even to get the order of the National Commission implemented by the adamant Respondent Organisation, I had to struggle. And finally   the amount   was    paid by the reluctant CGEWHO in three instalments only after my relentless follow up.

What I wanted to convey through this small write up is that you should never give up fighting, however bad the situation may be, when once you are convinced that you are right. You do not know how close to success you were there, at the time of your giving up the battle. As you know, for boiling of water a particular level of temperature is required. A decimal less would not give you the desired result.

Had I just like that given up the battle when once my case was dismissed by the District Forum, I would be carrying that wounded feeling forever. It would never have been a solace to me, to think that though I had, in fact, a very strong case, it was only the District Forum that has erred in giving an unjustified order. I did not give up the battle even when my stand was vindicated in the State Commission as the compensation awarded by them was just a pittance. And, their observation that the meager amount awarded by them would compensate me on all counts has actually provoked me to challenge their order before the National Commission whose order in my favour has ultimately proved that “Effort Never Dies!”

And above all, you will agree that had I not waged this battle with such vehemence I would not be having a great opportunity like this to share my success story so proudly with the readers. Hoping that my battle would inspire others too to fight for justice I am sharing this episode in detail with you all.

 “One needs to be slow in forming convictions, but once formed they must be defended against the heaviest odds.” ……….Mahatma Gandhi.

******

Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for information purposes only and do not constitute an advice or a legal opinion and are personal views of the author. It is based upon relevant law and/or facts available at that point of time and prepared with due accuracy & reliability. Readers are requested to check and refer relevant provisions of statute, latest judicial pronouncements, circulars, clarifications etc before acting on the basis of the above write up.  The possibility of other views on the subject matter cannot be ruled out. By the use of the said information, you agree that Author / TaxGuru is not responsible or liable in any manner for the authenticity, accuracy, completeness, errors or any kind of omissions in this piece of information for any action taken thereof. This is not any kind of advertisement or solicitation of work by a professional.

Author Bio

Qualification: Graduate
Company: LIC OF INDIA
Location: Hyderabad, Telangana, IN
Member Since: 02 Aug 2019 | Total Posts: 3

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