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Consumer forum asks builder to pay compensation to buyer

Written by: Staff
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Ahmedabad, Apr 5 (UNI) The Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has held city-based builder -- Bharvi Co-operative Housing society -- for deficiency in services and adopting unfair trade practices, and has directed it to pay a compensation of around Rs 60,000 to the buyer of a commercial shop.

The forum, in its order, asked society Chairman Bhikhabhai Atmaram Patal to pay Rs 1,500 per month with nine per cent interest from June 2, 2003 till payment, Rs 5,000 towards mental agony and Rs 5,000 towards costs to Mahadevbhai, who bought a shop from the housing society. It also ordered him to pay Rs 5,000 to Consumer Education Research Society (CERS) towards cost.

The forum observed that Mr Patel had ''failed to take reasonable care'' to ascertain that all dues of the Ahmedabad Electricity Corporation (AEC) had been paid. It accused him of having ''evaded'' giving possession of the shop for six years, of ''unlawful utilisation'' of the light connection of the shop without permission, and of intimidating Mahadevbhai by using his office of the chairmanship of the society.

The housing society had allotted to Mahadevbhai, one of its members, a shop on payment of Rs 96,000 as the price and Rs 20,000 as the maintenance deposit. Before possession, he was made to believe that all dues of the AEC had been paid, whereas the pending electricity bills worth Rs 50,313 had not been paid. As a result, the AEC disconnected the power supply to Mahadevbhai's shop.

He passed on the bill to the society and its chairman. But they refused their liability to pay, attributing the dues to the AEC's ''malpractice and inefficiency.'' Mahadevbhai approached CERS, which in turn took up the case with consumer forum.

UNI PB GK DKS HT1425

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