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The National Commission To Handle Consumer Disputes

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National Commission

Homebuyers henceforth will have to go to the National Commission in Delhi to seek redressal of disputes where the total monetary value exceeds Rs 1 crore

A buyer having a dispute over a flat that costs over Rs 1 crore will have to file a case before the national commission in Delhi. Maharashtra state consumer disputes redressal commission declared that the price of a flat will prove to be a deciding factor for disputes filed under the Consumer Protection Act. The total monetary value of the flat including the compensation will determine the jurisdiction under which the case is eligible to be dealt with. District fora handle cases with monetary value up to Rs 20 lakh. From 20 lakh to Rs 1 crore, state commissions have the authority to resolve the disputes. Cases exceeding Rs 1 crore are looked after by national commission based in Delhi.

When a flat buyer approached the state commission for a refund of Rs 45 lakh, the commission held that before taking any action, it will have to consider the total price of the flat along with the compensation claimed.

D R Shirasao, the presiding judicial member of the state commission, reasoned that since the flat was booked for more than Rs 2 crore, the consumer complaint is beyond the pecuniary jurisdiction of this commission in a mid-April order. Complainants R K Ramani and Jayanthi Ramani from Mumbai had sought “condonation of delay’’ which means an extension of the period in prescribed cases. This was sought in filing their complaint against Godrej Landmark Redevelopers Pvt Ltd. Such pleas seeking a delay can be considered only when the complaint is filed after the legally stipulated cut-off of two years. the state commission said that when the complaint is not within the pecuniary jurisdiction of the commission, it is not appropriate for the commission to decide the delay condonation application along with the complaint.

The order directed him to file the complaint before the appropriate commission which is the national commission. Jehangir Gai who is a consumer activist and authorised representative of the consumer said that he would challenge the order before the Supreme Court. Gai argued that the national commission is in Delhi and the distance is going to be an issue for consumers seeking justice in such matters.

With a huge number of flats in the city exceeding Rs 1 crore either due to the original value of the flat or including the compensation amount, consumers who may not go to the real estate regulatory authority will have to go all the way to Delhi for the delay in delivery and other disputes. According to Gai, this will cause more distress, frustration and hardship to many consumers.

Source: TOI

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