Consumer Protection; Tej Bahadur Thapa Vs. Branch Manager of District Central Co-operative Bank Ltd. [Calcutta High Court, 22-08-2016]

Consumer Protection Act, 1986 – Section 21 – Constitution of India – Article 227 – Revision – Power of superintendence over all courts by the High Court – Jurisdiction of the National Commission – the revisional application is very much maintainable before High Court, particularly, when the Court is, prima facie, satisfied on the merit of the case that the finding arrived at by the State Commission is perverse.


IN THE HIGH COURT AT CALCUTTA

CIVIL REVISIONAL JURISDICTION APPELLATE SIDE

BEFORE: The Hon’ble Justice SAHIDULLAH MUNSHI

Judgment on : August 22, 2016

C.O. No. 2587 of 2010

TEJ BAHADUR THAPA… Petitioner

-Versus-

BRANCH MANAGER OF DISTRICT CENTRAL

CO-OPERATIVE BANK LTD. & ANR…. Respondents/Opposite Parties

Mr. Siddhartha Banerjee, … For the petitioner Mr. Pabitra Charan Bhattacharjee, Mr. Subhajit Panja … For the opposite parties.

Sahidullah Munshi, J.:-

At the beginning of the hearing learned Advocate Mr. Prabitra Charan Bhattacharjee, appearing for the opposite parties, raised a preliminary objection that in view of Section 21 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986, this Court has no jurisdiction to entertain a revision under Article 227 of the Constitution usurping the jurisdiction of the National Commission.

In this context, it is necessary to take into consideration of the provisions of Section 21 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 which is quoted below :-

“Section 21… Sub-Section (b) gives power and jurisdiction to the National Commission to call for the records and pass appropriate orders in any consumer dispute which is pending before or has been decided by any State Commission, if it appears to the National Commission that such State Commission has exercised a jurisdiction not vested in it by law. The Commission may also scrutinize if the State Commission has failed to exercise a jurisdiction so vested, or has acted illegally or with material irregularity in the exercise of jurisdiction.”

Article 227 of the Constitution of India is also quoted below :-

# Article 227. Power of superintendence over all courts by the High Court

[(1) Every High Court shall have superintendence over all courts and tribunals throughout the territories in relation to which it exercises jurisdiction.]

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing provision, the High Court may –

a) call for returns from such courts;

b) make and issue general rules and prescribe forms for regulating the practice and proceedings of such courts; and

c) prescribe forms in which books, entries and accounts shall be kept by the officers of any such courts.

(3) The High Court may also settle tables of fees to be allowed to the sheriff and all clerks and officers of such courts and to attorneys, advocates and pleaders practising therein:

Provided that any rules made, forms prescribed or tables settled under clause (2) or clause (3) shall not be inconsistent with the provision of any law for the time being in force and shall require the previous approval of the Governor.

(4) Nothing in this article shall be deemed to confer on a High Court powers of superintendence over any court or tribunal constituted by or under any law relating to the Armed Forces.”

The Provisions in Section 21 – “… The Commission may also scrutinize if the State Commission has failed to exercise a jurisdiction…” does not, in any way, curtail the power under clause (1) of Article 227 of the Constitution. On a close scrutiny it further appears, and can be interpreted that even a decision passed by the National Commission under Section 21 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986, is also amenable to the superintending power of a High Court having territorial jurisdiction over the same. If that be so, why a party, in a given case, according to his convenience, cannot obtain relief under Article 227 of the Constitution, against an order of the State Commission. On further scrutiny of the provisions, as aforesaid, it appears that if for an aggrieved party two options for revisions are provided for by law, one under ordinary Statute and the other under the Constitution itself, it is the choice of the party suffering prejudice by the order aggrieved by.

To strike down usurpation of office is the function and duty of High Courts in exercise of their constitutional powers under Article 226 and Article 227. Article 227 is not merely procedural but confers substantive right on litigant to move High Court against the decisions or orders of Tribunals.

It is true that High Court will not review the discretion of the authority judicially exercised but it may interfere, if the exercise of the discretion is capricious or perverse.

As held by the Apex Court in the case of

# Jugal Kishore vs. Sitamarhi Central Co-operative reported in AIR 1967 SC 1494

Article 227 is of wider ambit than Article 226 and it does not limit the jurisdiction of the High Court to the hierarchy of Courts functioning directly under it under Civil Procedure Code and Criminal Procedure Code but it gives the High Court power to correct errors of various kinds of all Courts and Tribunals in appropriate cases.

In support of the objection with regard to the jurisdiction of the High Court to entertain a revisional application under Article 227 of the Constitution of India, Mr. Bhattacharjee, appearing for the opposite parties in his preliminary objection, relied upon some judgments which are as follows :-

# • Ravi Kant Srivastava vs. Ashok Kr. Chakraborty reported in (2016) 3 WBLR (Cal) 160

# • Nivedita Sharma vs. Cellular Operators Association of India & Ors. reported in (2012) 2 WBLR (SC) 38

# • The Manager, Burdwan Co-operative Agriculture and Rural Development Bank Limited vs. Anath Bandhu Dhara reported in 2009(2) CLJ (Cal) 685

# • Nilmoni Mukherjee & Ors. vs. Asim Kumar Chattopadhyay & Anr. reported in 2008(1) CLJ (Cal) 892

# • Hooghly Co-operative Agriculture and Rural Development Bank Limited vs. Nemai Chandra Ghosh reported in AIR 2007 CAL 230

# • Binod Behari Das vs. Smt. Soma Roy & Ors. reported in AIR 1996 CAL 231

# • United Bank of India vs. Hirak Mukherjee & Ors. reported in 1995(1) CLJ 124

# • Visva Bharati vs. Smt. Rakhi Debnath & Ors. reported in 1995(2) CLJ 218

In Ravi Kant Srivastava vs. Ashok Kr. Chakraborty (supra), a Single Bench of this Hon’ble Court, while answering to the question of maintainability of the revisional application before this Court under the provisions of Article 227 of the Constitution of India has held that High Court should not entertain a petition under Article 227 of the Constitution of India against the order of a State Commission while so holding the learned Single Judge relied on another judgment in the case of Nivedita Sharma vs. Cellular Operators Association of India & Ors. (supra), which held redressal of grievance by way of writ petition should not be entertained ignoring statutory dispensation.

In the case of The Manager, Burdwan Co-operative Agricultural and Rural Development Bank Limited vs. Anath Bandhu Dhara (supra), a Single Bench of this Hon’ble Court has held that when the remedy available under the statute that remedy should be exhausted and before exhausting that remedy, petition under Article 227 cannot be entertained. In the said judgment some decisions of the Hon’ble Apex Court has been referred to but no discussion has been made as to whether those judgments have laid down any law as to the total bar for entertaining a revisional application against the order passed by the National State Commission.

In the case of Nilmoni Mukherjee vs. Asim Kr. Chattopadhyay & Anr. (supra), a Single Bench of this Hon’ble Court held that a party aggrieved by an order passed under Consumer Protection Actshould not approach the High Court under Article 227 of the Constitution. The said decision, however, is based on the issue whether a party can approach before this Hon’ble Court under Article 227 ignoring the provisions of Section 19 of the Consumer Protection Act, which provides for an appeal before the National Commission but not with regard to the power of revision by the State Commission under Section 21 of the Consumer Protection Act. Therefore, ratio of the judgment in the said case is not applicable and is distinguishable on fact.

In the case of Hooghly Co-operative Agricultural and Rural Development Bank Limited vs. Nemai Chandra Ghosh (supra), a Single Bench of this Hon’ble Court held that since an appeal has been prescribed before Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission under Section 15 of the Consumer Protection Act, the petition under Article 227 is not maintainable. The said decision is also on a different question and is not applicable in the present case.

In the case of Binod Behari Das vs. Smt. Soma Ray & Ors. (supra), a Single Bench of this Hon’ble Court held that since the appeal has been prescribed under Consumer Protection Act, no revision under Article 227 could be filed. Therefore, this case is also distinguishable on fact and its scope.

In the case of United Bank of India vs. Hirak Mukherjee & Ors. (supra), the Division Bench of this Hon’ble Court held that when on examination of the facts and circumstances of the case, no mistake can be found so as to attract Article 227 of the Constitution making it a fit case for interference, the petitioner should have gone before the National Commission instead of filing a revisional application under Article 227 of the Constitution. The Division Bench has distinguished the scope of interference with the order passed by the State Commission under Section 21 of the Consumer Protection Act and under Article 227 of the Constitution of India. The Division Bench held that if the petitioner can make out a case or the error of such that has been committed by the State Commission then only a petition under Article 227 would be held to be maintainable, otherwise the petitioner has to go before the appellate forum within the meaning of Section 19 of the Consumer Protection Act. It has also been held that the scope under Section 19 of the Consumer Protection Act is more wider than scope of the petition under Article 227 of the Constitution. In the present case as would appear later that State Commission’s finding suffers from perversity inasmuch as without discussing the evidence on record, it has held that Forum’s finding is not based on evidence.

In the case of Visva Bharati vs. Smt. Rakhi Debnath & Ors. (supra), a Single Bench of this Hon’ble Court with reference to the scope of Section 21 of the Consumer Protection Act held that when the Act clearly makes a provision for appeal against the order of District Forum before the State Commission and even the decision of the State Commission can be challenged in revision before the National Commission, the aggrieved party without exhausting such remedy, ordinarily, should not be allowed to raise disputed question of facts by invoking the power of the High Court under Article 226 of the Constitution. Therefore, this judgment has got no application in the facts and circumstances of the present case.

To contradict the objection with regard to the maintainability of the petition under Article 227 of the Constitution, Mr. Banerjee, appearing for the petitioner, has placed reliance upon the following decisions :-

• Judgment and order dated 20th January, 2016 passed in the case of Bhaskar Jalan & Anr. vs. M/s. Housing Estates Pvt. Ltd. & Ors. (C.O. No. 4158 of 2015).

• Judgment and order dated 20th January, 2014 passed in the case of L & T Finance Ltd. vs. Anup Kumar Bera & Anr. (C.O. No. 3020 of 2012).

• Judgment and order dated 7th March, 2012 passed in the case of The Operation Manager, Auto Loan Consumer Service Department, ABN Amro Bank Ltd. vs. Praveen Khaitan & Anr. (C.O. No. 749 of 2008 with CAN No. 6414 of 2011).

In the case of Bhaskar Jalan and Anr. vs. M/s. Housing Estates Pvt. Ltd. and Ors. (supra), a Single Bench of this Hon’ble Court, while deciding a revisional application against an order passed by State Consumer Redressal Commission in exercise of its power under Section 17(1)(b) of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 and the preliminary objection with regard to maintainability of the revisional application before this Court under Article 227 of the Constitution, has held –

“…There is a fundamental distinction between a statutory power and a constitutional power. There cannot be any limitations on constitutional power. The limitations, if any, are self-imposed. While statutes are seasonal, the Constitution is perennial. The power exercised by the Court under Article 227 of the Constitution of India is a power bestowed upon the Court by the Constitution and such power cannot be curtailed by any statutes. All the Courts in the jurisdiction of a High Court are subordinate to it and subject to its control and supervision under Article 227of the Constitution of India. While appellate or revisional jurisdiction is regulated by the statutes, the power of superintendents under Article 227 of the Constitution is constitutional. The Court under Article 227 of the Constitution of India may interfere with an order passed by the Subordinate Court or Tribunal if the Court finds that the reasons given by the Trial Court are moonshine, flimsy or irrational and not merely because in the exercise of its discretion, another Court might have a different view and allowed the application or because the reasons for giving a ruling on a point or for rejecting an application may be wrong or disclosed a non-judicious exercise of discretion and open to correction in an appeal. The power under Article 227 of the Constitution being a power of judicial superintendents must be exercised sparingly and only to keep Subordinate Courts and Tribunals within the bound of their authority and not to correct mere errors. Moreover, where the statute bears the exercise of revisional powers it would require very exceptional circumstances to warrant interference under Article 227 of the Constitution since the power of superintendents was not meant to circumvent statutory law. The said power could not be exercised “as the cloak of an appeal in disguise”. Ordinarily when a statutory forum is created by law for redressal of grievance and that too, in a fiscal statute, the Court may not exercise its supervisory jurisdiction under Article 227 of the Constitution of India. It is misnomer to say that a statutory power debars a Constitutional Court from exercising its jurisdiction under the Constitution. The Court imposes a self- restriction on its power while discharging its function under the Constitution if there is an efficacious alternative remedy available in law to a litigant…”

In L & T Finance Ltd. vs. Anup Kr. Bera and Anr. (supra), a Single Bench of this Hon’ble Court, while considering the point of maintainability of a petition under Article 227 of the Constitution against an order passed by the Station Commission, has held –

“… The Consumer Protection Act, 1986 is enacted to protect the common man from wrongs where the remedy under the common law has become illusory. Under the said Act, a consumer is entitled to participate in a proceeding directly and is helpless against the power business house is sufficiently taken care off. The Consumer can very well ventilate his grievance before the Forum without any procedural wrangles and hypertechnicalities. The Forum also correspondingly owes responsibility to adjudicate on summary trial to serve the ends of justice not only in the form of damages but to bring a change in the attitude of service provider qualitatively. The Forum cannot absolve itself from providing the reasons to avoid the chance of arbitrariness and to provide the higher forum to test the correctness thereof. In the above perspective, the observation of the three judge bench of the Supreme Court in case of Vishwabharathi House Building Coop. Society (supra) can be safely relied upon which reads thus:

“39. The rights of the parties have adequately been safeguarded by reason of the provisions of the said Act inasmuch as although it provides for an alternative system of consumer jurisdiction on summary trial, they are required to arrive at a conclusion based on reasons. Even when quantifying damages, they are required to make an attempt to serve the ends of justice aiming not only at recompensing the individual but also to bring about a qualitative change in the attitude of the service provider. Assignment of reasons excludes or at any rate minimizes the chances of arbitrariness and the higher forums created under the Act can test the correctness thereof.”

The impugned order is bereft of any reasons. The District Forum dismisses the complaint case solely on the ground of having approached the Civil Court. There was no finding recorded by the District Forum which obviously should not be done on the findings relating to the grant of compensation and/or damages. The State Commission while arriving at the finding that the order of the District Forum is not sustainable awarded the compensation and/or damages as claimed in the said complaint petition without recording any findings thereupon. It is still unknown at least from the impugned order as to what evidence and/or materials were produced by the opposite party no.1 on an issue relating to the compensation and/or damages. The State Commission should have scanned the evidence and the documents produced on the issue of the compensation and/or damages and the quantum thereof…”

While deciding the point of maintainability, The Hon’ble Judge also considered the judgment in the case of Nivedita Sharma vs. Cellular Operators Association of India and Ors. (supra), Operation Manager, Auto Loan Consumer Service Department, ABN Amro Bank Ltd. vs. Prabin Khaitan and Anr. (supra). The Hon’ble Judge has also considered the case of

# State of Karnataka vs. Vishwabharathi Housing Building Co-operative Society & Ors. reported in (2003) 2 SCC 412

In the said judgment the Hon’ble Judge has also categorically pointed out the provisions of Section 3 of the West Bengal Consumer Protection Act, to the effect that it supplements and not supplants the jurisdiction of the civil Court or other statutory forum. The word “not in derogation of” used in Section 3 of the Consumer Protection Act, makes it clear that the provisions of the Act shall not be in derogation of the provisions of any other law for the time being in force. This shows that the legislature has intended to mean that Consumer Protection Act shall not supersede the existing laws available to the consumers on the date of the commencement of the said Act. A judgment in the case of State of Karnataka vs. Vishwabharathi Housing Building Co-operative Society & Ors. (supra), is a 3-Judge Bench judgment and on the basis of the ratio decided in the said judgment, His Lordship held that the power of the High Court under Article 226 or 227 of the Constitution has not been taken away because of the alternative efficacious remedy provided in the statute.

In the case of Operation Manager, Auto Loan Consumer Service Department, ABN Amro Bank Ltd. vs. Prabin Khaitan and Anr. (supra), an Hon’ble Single Judge, decided the issue regarding maintainability of the revisional application under Article 227 of the Constitution and held in the affirmative that the revisional application is maintainable. However, this judgment has been referred to by the Hon’ble Judge in the subsequent judgment dated 20th January, 2014. In view of the ratio decided by the Hon’ble Judge in the case of Operation Manager, Auto Loan Consumer Service Department, ABN Amro Bank Ltd. vs. Prabin Khaitan and Anr. (supra), and the ratio decided by another Hon’ble Judge in the case of Bhaskar Jalan and Anr. vs. M/s. Housing Estates Pvt. Ltd. and Ors. (supra), this Court is judicially bound to hold that the present revisional application is very much maintainable before this Court, particularly, when this Court is, prima facie, satisfied on the merit of the case that the finding arrived at by the State Commission is perverse. I have got this opportunity because the revisional application was heard on merit including the question of maintainability.

This revisional application is directed against an order dated 19th April, 2010 passed by the learned State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission in S.C. Case No. FA/46/2010, allowing the appeal and setting aside the judgment and order passed by the Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum in complaint no. 32/D/2009.

The petitioner herein filed an application before the District Consumer Redressal Forum at Darjeeling on the alleged deficiency of service on the part of the opposite parties under Section 15of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 (hereinafter referred to as the said Act), inter alia, praying for a direction upon the opposite parties for clearance of cheque amounting Rs.7,00,000/- only, in favour of the complainant together with a compensation of Rs. 1,00,000/- only, to be paid to the complainant by the opposite parties on account of mental harassment and agony caused by the opposite parties to the complainant and a sum of Rs.50,000/- only, as exemplary cost for the alleged deficiency and negligence in service by the opposite parties.

The short case that was made out by the petitioner in his complaint before the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum (hereinafter to be called as the said Forum) is that a cheque bearing No.57979 dated 22nd September, 2009 for Rs.7,50,000/- only, drawn at State Bank of India, Siliguri, which was issued by the Chief Executive Engineer, NHPC, Kalimpong in favour of the Chairman, Samthar Agricultural Multipurpose Co-operative Society (hereinafter referred to as the SAMCO) towards the part compensation out of a total compensation amount of Rs. 31,00,000/- only, payable by the NHPC to the SAMCO. The Chairman, SAMCO was operating his account with the opposite party no. 1, i.e, Branch Manager, District Central Co-operative Branch, Kalimpong, Dal Bahadurgiri Road, P.S.-Kalimpong, District-Darjeeling, being Account No. S/82, N.F. No. 147/53 as such the said Chairman deposited the aforesaid cheque bearing no. 57979 dated 22nd September, 2009 for the aforesaid sum of Rs. 7,50,000/- only, with the opposite party on 23rd September, 2009 for clearance from the State Bank of India, Siliguri. The said cheque for the said amount was cleared by the State Bank of India, Siliguri through the State Bank of India at Kalimpong and the aforesaid amount was lying in the account of SAMCO with the opposite party no. 1. On 23rd September, 2009, the Chairman, SAMCO, Kalimpong issued a cheque bearing no. 210276 dated 23rd September, 2009, for a sum of Rs. 7,00,000/- only, in favour of the complainant. The complainant presented the said cheque bearing no. 210276 dated 23rd September, 2009 for the said sum of Rs. 7,00,000/- only, with the State Bank of India Kalimpong Branch, where the complainant operates his account, on 23rd September, 2009 for clearance from the opposite party no. 1. The Complainant, subsequently, came to know that the said cheque bearing No.210276 dated 23rd September, 2009 for Rs. 7,00,000/- only, was not cleared by the opposite party no.1 on some pretext. The complainant approached the opposite parties for the clearance of the said cheque for payment from the State Bank of India, Kalimpong Branch but the opposite parties withheld the clearance of the said cheque and, as a result, no payment was made to the complainant on the basis of the cheque issued by the Chairman, SAMCO in favour of the complainant. Therefore, the complaint was filed before the said Forum with the aforesaid prayers. While filing the said complaint, the petitioner herein as complainant filed several documents in support of his claim. The opposite parties filed a written objection and, inter alia, contended that the cheque for a sum of Rs.7,00,000/- only, was sent to the Branch of the opposite party no.1 for collection by the State Bank of India and the same was not cleared for payment on the grounds that on verification of the records it was found that a letter of objection against payment of the said cheque in question was submitted by one STI & Co., 27th Mile SAMCO ropeway, NH 31A, Reang, District- Darjeeling under a memo dated 24th September, 2009. In view of the objection so raised, the Bank kept the payment in abeyance. It was further contended that a copy of the stop payment request addressed to the Chairman, SAMCO by one Rajiv Pradhan and Sri Subhas Singh was submitted to the opposite party no. 1, which compelled the said opposite party no. 1 to disallow clearance and payment of the cheque in question. The cheque in question was returned by the opposite party no.1 to State Bank of India on 6th October, 2006 with return slip stating reasons clearly written on the return slip no. 16 and 17. After considering the documents filed by the complainant and the contentions raised by the complainant and the opposite parties, the District Forum disposed of the complaint finally by its order dated 24th December, 2009. While disposing of the complaint, the said Forum framed the following issues, viz.,

# 1. Is the complainant consumer under Section 2(d) of Consumer Protection Act, 1986?

# 2. Does the Forum have jurisdiction to try the case?

# 3. Is there any deficiency and negligence of service on the part of the opposite parties?

# 4. Is the Complainant entitled to the reliefs as claimed for?

So far as the issue no.1 is concerned, it is the clear finding of the Forum that the complainant is a consumer within the meaning of Section 2(1)(b) of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986. So far as the issue no.2 is concerned, the District Forum has held that it has the jurisdiction to try the case. So far as the issue nos. 3 and 4 are concerned, the Forum held that the cheque in question was presented on 23rd September, 2009 but the complainant did not get his payment. The Forum held that the objection filed by the opposite parties were baseless as they stopped payment without any order from any Court of law and only on the basis of the objection raised by a third party. Such payment could not have been stopped. It has been held by the District Forum that the letter dated 22nd October, 2009 sent by SAMCO to the opposite parties to release the amount to the complainant goes to prove that the opposite parties purposely withheld the cheque without any reasonable basis. It has been held by the District Forum that opposite parties, when got clearance from SAMCO, it was the duty to immediately release the amount to the complainant. Therefore, according to the Forum, the opposite parties failed to discharge the duty, the documents that is the sale deed and the partnership deed, which were relied upon by the opposite parties did not help to prove their case. District Forum held that there was gross deficiency and negligence in service on the part of the opposite parties. Accordingly, the said Forum allowed the complaint case being C.C. Case No. 32/D/2009 on contest against opposite parties. The opposite parties were directed to release the amount of Rs.7,00,000/- only, in favour of the complainant together with interest @12% per annum w.e.f. 23rd September, 2009, till the date of release of payment. The opposite parties were further directed to pay a compensation of Rs.10,000/- only, together with cost of Rs.5,000/- only, for mental harassment and agony caused by the opposite party. The order was directed to be complied with within 30 days from the date of passing of the order or from the knowledge of the opposite parties, failing which, additional interest @ 6% per annum was directed to be paid by the opposite parties on the total amount. The said decision of the District Forum was challenged by the opposite parties before the Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, West Bengal, which was registered as S.C. Case No. FA/46/2010. The appeal was taken up for hearing by the learned Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (hereinafter to be called as the said Commission) and by a judgment and order dated 19th April, 2010, set aside the order passed by the District Forum. While setting aside the judgment and order, passed by the District Forum, the learned Appellate Commission held that the appellants before the Commission were not liable for non-encashment of the cheque and that too for very tenable and valid reasons. It has been held that the appellants very correctly and beautifully pointed out major discrepancies, as were applicable under Co-operative Act and other dispensation and that no stretch of logic and provisions, the appellants should be held to be efficient in service in such regard. The observation that there was no deficiency in service on the part of the appellants cannot be taken note of by the Appellate Commission inasmuch as, the said point has been rightly decided in favour of the complainant and the contention raised by the appellants do not appear to be correct in view of the provisions of law. This court cannot agree with the finding made by the learned Appellate Commission that the appellants are not at all liable for payment of the said amount. A cheque has been issued, the same was placed for clearance, this Court does not find any reason as to why the payment was withheld at the objection of a third party. Furthermore, the learned Appellate Court below has not discussed anything about the evidence dealt with by the District Forum. Simply by saying that on the basis of the evidence, the appellant has improved his case will not do, the Appellate Court must furnish its own reasons as to why it says that on the basis of the evidence, the complainant has failed to prove his case or as to how the District Forum failed to appreciate the evidence on record. Unless that exercise is made by the Appellate Commission, the finding made by the Appellate Court appears to be perverse because without discussing the evidence on record and without discussing the error committed by the District Forum, the Appellate Commission does not seem to be justified to discard the finding of the District Forum. Therefore, the finding arrived at by the Appellate Commission appears to be perverse and is not sustainable in law.

On perusal of the order passed by the District Forum as also the documents relied on by the complainant, it does not appear to this court that the order passed by the District Forum warrants interference in any manner. This court, therefore, set aside the order passed by the learned Appellate Commission and affirm the order passed by the District Forum save and except that the petitioner will not get the additional interest @ 6% per annum as has been mentioned by the District Forum. This Court also modifies the order passed by the District Forum to the extent that the petitioner will be entitled to get simple interest @ 9% per annum but not @ 12% per annum, as has been held by the Apex Court in various decisions particularly in deciding the cases under Motor Vehicles Act. The Hon’ble Supreme Court has held in the case of

# Surti Gupta vs. United India Insurance Co. & Anr reported in 2015 SAR (C) 571

that the interest should be paid @ 9% per annum. That being the position, this court directs that the petitioner will be entitled to interest @ 9% per annum on the principal sum of Rs.7,00,000/- only, as directed by the District Forum.

The revisional application is disposed of.

There will be no order as to costs.

Urgent Photostat certified copy of this judgment, if applied for, be delivered to the learned advocates for the respective parties upon compliance of all usual formalities.

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