Friday, June 18, 2010

DF: SMPS fault case

BEFORE THE DISTRICT CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL FORUM AT PUDUCHERRY

Consumer Complaint No.18/2007

Dated this the 8th day of August, 2007.

R. Mani S/o M.A. Raman, having a job typing centre at No.80, Rangapillai Street, Pondicherry.

Complainant

v.

Siara Systems rep. by its Proprietor, 23, Vallalar Salai, Kamaraj Salai, Pondicherry. … Opposite Party

BEFORE:

THIRU A. ASOKAN, B.A., B.L.,

PRESIDENT.

TMT. SELLIAMMAL,

MEMBER.

TMT. K.K. RITHA,

MEMBER.

FOR THE COMPLAINANT: M/s R. Thiroumavalavan & S. Jayaprakash, Advocates.

FOR THE OPPOSITE PARTY: M/s L. Vinoba & B. Kumaranand, Advocates.

O R D E R

(By Tmt. Selliammal, Member.)

This is a complaint u/s 12 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 (hereinafter called the “Act”) praying to direct the opposite party to pay Rs.1,200/- paid towards annual maintenance contract charges, Rs.190/- being the cost of SMPS component, Rs.1 lakh as compensation for deficiency in service and negligence, Rs.10,000/- as compensation for mental agony and for costs of Rs.5,000/-.

2. The gist of the complaint is as follows:

The complainant submits that he took training under the self-employment scheme and afterwards he obtained loan from a bank and set up a job typing centre for his livelihood. In order to improve his work procedure, he took loan from Indian Bank, Pondicherry in a sum of Rs.55,250/- and purchased a computer Intel P3 @ 550 Mhz. Since a problem arose in the system, he approached the opposite party for rectification. The opposite party’s service persons came and inspected the system and assessed that P-III processor was damaged and has to be replaced. So, the complainant paid a sum of Rs.2,400/- to the opposite party and got it replaced. The complainant states that the opposite party in order to maintain a continuous service over his computer pursued him to enter into an annual maintenance contract (AMC) and they both entered into it with effect form 01.07.2005 and the complainant paid an AMC charge of Rs.1,200/-. The complainant submits that within ten days of the replacement, the computer developed defect and the opposite party’s service persons inspected and stated that SMPS was to be serviced and after replacing a spare one to the complainant’s computer, took the complainant’s SMPS. But within a few hours the computer went off and on informing the opposite party’s persons came and took the computer for repair. After replacing the SMPS, which was worth Rs.190/-, they delivered the computer to the complainant on 09.09.2005 and again the next day itself, i.e. on 10.09.2005, the problem recurred and the opposite party took the computer to their workplace and delivered it after four days. Immediately after delivery, again the problem reappeared and on intimation the opposite party replaced his computer with spare parts and had taken the computer for service. Since the complainant was not able to do his work, which is the only source of his income, he was forced to purchase another computer on 25.09.2005. On 01.10.2005, after twenty days the opposite party delivered the computer but within a few hours the computer got struck and after intimation the opposite party’s service persons arrived but after inspecting it they were unable to detect the fault and the complainant alleges that even though several attempts were made to the opposite party to attend the computer they failed to respond even though the AMC was in existence under which they are bound to do as per the agreement. So, the complainant gave a representation on 21.12.2005 stating the deficiency and negligence of the opposite party and to refund the amount paid by him for which the opposite party gave evasive reply. Then on 31.12.2005 and on 21.01.2006 the complainant gave representations for which he replied denying the allegations. The complainant alleges that he never prevented the opposite party at any point of time to inspect the computer as alleged in the reply by the opposite party. The complainant contended that the opposite party never identified the defect properly and made him to run for his livelihood. The complainant states that he earns his livelihood only by doing typing jobs and as such no prudent man would prevent anyone who attends a defect in the system which would affect his livelihood. Due to the opposite party’s attitude, the complainant was made to close his job typing work and was compelled to purchase another computer to do his job. In spite of all the steps taken and reminders sent by the complainant, the opposite party failed to comply with the request of the complainant and till date he was unable to get any remedy. The complainant submits that the opposite party made him to run from pillar to post for his rightful claim and caused mental agony. The opposite party’s action against the terms and conditions of the contract of service which are in gross violation of the norms expected to be followed by them which ultimately amounts to deficiency in service for which they are liable to pay the AMC charges the cost of the SMPS and compensation for deficiency and negligence and for mental agony and for costs.

3. In the reply version filed by the opposite party, the opposite party denies all the complaint averments of the complainant in toto as false, frivolous and fictitious. The opposite party specifically denies the averment that the complainant never took a loan from Indian Bank, Pondicherry, for a sum of Rs.55,250/- in order to purchase a computer Intel P3@550 Mhz. For the purpose of modernizing his job typing centre which he had set up after taking self-employment scheme by getting loan from the bank to set up a job typing centre for his livelihood. They also deny the allegation that they never persuaded the complainant to enter into the AMC in order to maintain a continuous service and within ten days of replacement the computer never got repaired and the next day itself, i.e. on 10.09.2005 as the computer became defective and they took it for service and delivered it after four days and again it became defective and they took it for service and as a result of it, the complainant was forced to purchase a new computer as it was his only source of income. The opposite party contended that after repair they delivered it to the complainant on 01.10.2005 after twenty days but within a few hours, it got struck up and on intimation the opposite party’s service persons who came and inspected it were unable to detect the fault and without any work went off. The opposite party also alleges that in spite of repeated demands made by the complainant they failed to respond and never cared to attend their service maintenance, which they are bound to do as per their agreement. They also deny that for the representation given by the complainant on 21.12.2005 stating the deficiency and their negligence, they gave an evasive reply. For the complainant’s representation on 31.12.2005 and 21.01.2006, the opposite party gave reply denying it was false and concocted allegations for the purpose of this complaint. They also deny the allegation made by the complainant that at no point of time he prevented them to inspect his computer as it was the only source of his income and they never identified the defect properly. The opposite party specifically denies that they are not making the complainant to run from pillar to post for his rightful claim and thus caused mental agony and acted against the terms and conditions of the contract of service. Their acts are not in violation of the norms expected to be followed by them which ultimately amounts to deficiency in service for which they are solely liable for it. The opposite party submits that the computer Intel P3550 Mhz. Was not purchased from them and in July 2005 the complainant approached them to rectify the defect that crept in his computer. They immediately returned to his place and identified that the processor got damaged and he insisted them to replace a new processor and it was done. Though the AMC charge of Rs.1,200/- is to be paid in lumpsum, due to the financial inability of the complainant and as per his request agreed for the payment of the same in two instalments. The opposite party submits that on 03.09.2005 the complainant informed them that there was a problem in his computer and they attended immediately and rectified it and on being satisfied by their service, the complainant paid the second instalment amount. But till date he has not paid Rs.190/- towards replacing the spares in SMPS. Again on 21.09.2005 the complainant called them to rectify the computer and they attended and found that the system was hanging and identified that it occurred due to the keyboard and mouse and after giving a standby, they took it for service. At each and every time whenever the complainant intimated them about the defect, they at once attended on the same as per the AMC and replaced the components by providing standby for all the components and his work was not interrupted. On 01.10.2005 the opposite party replaced the keyboard and mouse that were taken for service on 21.09.2005 and took back the standby components. For the complainant’s letter dt.12.12.2005 the opposite party’s service personnel attended for rendering their service and the complainant did not allow them and so the complainant sent a letter dt.30.12.2005 explaining all the facts. Again on 31.12.2005 the complainant wrote a letter with false allegations and on 19.01.2006 they replied to it and for the complainant’s letter dt.21.01.2006, sent a reply on 15.02.2006. The opposite party submits that they rendered their service as per the AMC but the complainant only prevented them from doing it, is proved through letter dt.30.12.2005, 19.01.2005 and 15.02.2005 respectively. The opposite party alleges that the complainant’s business is not affected and for that purpose he had not purchased another computer in September 2005 and prays for the dismissal of the complaint with costs.

5. To establish their respective cases, CW1 was examined and Exs.C1 to C11 were marked on the side of the complainant, whereas no oral or documentary evidence was adduced on behalf of the opposite party.

6. The points for determination are:

1) Whether the complainant is a consumer or not?

2) Whether there is deficiency in service on the part of the opposite party?

3) To what relief the parties are entitled?

7. POINT No.1:

The complainant entered into an AMC with the opposite party as per Ex.C4. Towards the AMC payment, the complainant paid to the opposite party a sum of Rs.600/- and Rs.3,000/- and for processor charge as found in Ex.C3. Thus, since consideration is paid by the complainant to the opposite party, he is a consumer and he is entitled to file the complaint before this Forum.

The point is answered accordingly in favour of the complainant.

8. POINT No.2:

The complainant took training under the Prime Minister’s Rozgar Yojana Training Programme conducted by the Pondicherry University Community College is proved through Ex.C1. As a job typist, he obtained loan of Rs.55,250/- from Indian Bank, Pondicherry, in order to modernize his job typing centre as seen from Ex.C2(1). Ex.C2(2) dt.08.06.2005 is the invoice bill issued by the Electro Point Services for the purchase of the computer Intel P3@550 Mhz. by the complainant. Since a problem arose in the system, the complainant approached the opposite party and they sent their service persons who inspected the system and assessed that a complaint namely P-III Processor got damaged and had to be replaced. On believing their words, he paid a sum of Rs.2,400/- towards the replacement under Ex.C3. The opposite party alleges that in order to maintain a continuous service over his computer persuaded him to enter into an AMC under Ex.C4 with effect from 01.07.2005 to 30.06.2006. Ex.C5(5) is the service reports of the opposite party. Within ten days of the replacement, the system became defective and the opposite party’s service persons came and inspected and stated that SMPS was to be serviced after replacing a spare one to the complainant’s computer and took the said component. But the complainant contended that within a few hours computer went off and on intimation to the opposite party, their service persons came and took his computer for repair. After replacing the SMPS which was worth RS.190/- as seen from Ex.C6 delivered the computer to the complainant on 09.09.2005 but on 10.09.2005 the next day itself the problem recurred and the opposite party took the computer to their place and delivered it after four days. As a result of it, the complainant was not able to do his work and as it was his only source of income, due to necessity he was forced to purchased another computer on 24.09.2005 under Ex.C7(2). The complainant submits that the opposite party delivered the computer to him on 01.10.2005 after twenty days. But within a few hours, the system got struck and on intimation, the opposite party’s service persons came and inspected the computer but they were unable to detect the fault and went off without a single word. So, the complainant called the opposite party’s several times who in turn turned a deaf ear and failed to respond, though they are bound to attend and repair the system as per the AMC. Frustrated by the acts of the opposite party, the complainant gave a representation under Ex.C8(1)dt.21.12.2005 stating the deficiency and negligence of the opposite party and they sent Ex.C9(1) to him. Then again the complainant sent Ex.C8(2) dt.31.12.2005 and Ex.C8(3) dt.21.01.2006 respectively for which the opposite party replied through Ex.C9(2) dt.19.01.2006 and Ex.C9(3) dt.15.02.2006 with evasive replies and false allegations. Ex.C10 dt.15.04.2006 is the Advocate notice issued by the complainant to the opposite party and Ex.C11 is the acknowledgement card. The opposite party in the reply version denies all the averments of the complainant except the AMC entered by both parties. But during the course of the argument, the learned counsel for the opposite party alleges that the complainant’s computer Intel P3@550 Mhz. was not purchased from them but in July 2005, the complainant had approached them to rectify the defect that crept in his computer. Thus, it is an admitted fact by both the complainant and the opposite party. The opposite party submits that as soon as they received the intimation from the complainant, their service persons approached him and identified that the processor got damaged and on the insistence of the complainant replaced it with a new one and also states that the complainant paid the AMC amount on two instalments which is also admitted by the complainant during the course of cross-examination. The opposite party also contended that after having satisfied with their service only the complainant enquired about AMC and entered into it and afterwards only he paid the second instalment of Rs.600/- towards AMC. The fact that the complainant had not repaid the sum of Rs.190/- towards the replacement of the spare of SMPS, whereas the complainant has filed Ex.C6 which is the invoice of it issued by the opposite party. If the complainant had not paid it, the opposite party could not have issued Ex.C6. On 21.09.2005 when the complainant called them to rectify the problem in his computer, their service persons attended and found the system was hanging due to the problem occurred due to keyboard and mouse and so they gave a standby and replaced them on 01.10.2005 which was taken for service on 21.09.2005 and took back the standby components. They also contended that at each and every time when the complainant called them to attend the defects, at once they attended and rectified it promptly by replacing the standby components and thus they were keen in maintaining the AMC. Hence, the complainant’s income was not affected in any way because he purchased a new computer. They further allege that the complainant did not permit their service persons to perform their service as per the AMC. Thus, there is no deficiency in their service. They also admit the letters Ex.C8(3) issued by the complainant and their replies Exs.C9(3) and Ex.C10.

9. It is quite clear from the complaint averments and oral evidence and version of the opposite party that the dispute between them is pertaining to the AMC only. So, here we have to discuss whether during the AMC period the opposite party had rendered their service fully or not and whether the AMC period is in existence or not. The complainant’s Ex.C5(6) is to be taken up first for deciding it. Ex.C5(1) shows hanging problem, Ex.C5(2) shows hanging and system is taken for service, Ex.C5(3) shows that the system was taken for service, Ex.C5(4) shows problem in keyboard and mouse and taken up for service after replacing standby. But Ex.C5(5) reported as system hangs. Fault diagnosed and service rendered columns are left blank and the AMC box is ticked. It shows that the opposite party’s service persons approached and looked after the computer of the complainant but as per the plea of the complainant since they could not find out the defect in it, they have left the 2nd & 3rd columns empty. In Ex.C5(6) also the opposite party had left blank the problem reported column and diagnosed column but in the service column stated that the system keyboard and mouse returned after service, standby KBD and mouse taken on back on ‘01.10.2005’. During this period different engineers appeared. In Ex.C5(5) problem is reported as system hangs and no diagnose is made and hence no service is rendered by the opposite party is proved and the period covers in AMC only. In Ex.C5(6) the first two problem reported and the 2nd diagnosed columns are left blank by the opposite parties. But the period covered is mentioned as AMC. In the service column entered as “system, keyboard and mouse returned after service standby KBD and mouse taken back.” So, it shows clearly that the opposite party’s personnel came to the complainant’s business place but they never looked after the system and made diagnose of it. Just they came and took back their standby placed in the complainant’s computer as per the oral evidence and plea of the complainant. The opposite party in Ex.C9(1) dt.30.12.2005 and C9(2) dt.19.01.2006 had stated that: “ 20.12.2005 tiu vd;Dila fzpzpia rhp bra;ahky; cs;sPh;fs; vd;W Twpa[s;sPh;fs;. v';fSf;F ,;f;fojk; Kyk;jhd; ,j;jfty; bjhpate;jJ .” The opposite party is under the liability to render their service to the complainant as they have entered into the AMC. During the AMC period it is the bounden duty of the opposite party to have the knowledge about the repairs of their customers and they should take immediate effective steps to rectify it without fail. AMC was entered by the complainant with the utmost good faith that the opposite party would render their service without fail which will be very helpful to earn his livelihood. But the opposite party had failed to do so while the AMC period is in existence. This shows the carelessness of the opposite party and their deficiency in service. For nearly two months they have failed to render their service during the AMC period. Since the system had often became repaired, the complainant due to necessity he is forced to purchase a new one because he is earning his livelihood through his job typing centre only. During the repair period, he had lost his customers and there is a loss in income and suffering for which the opposite party is liable to pay compensation with costs. Since the opposite party has failed to render his service during the AMC period as per the contract, there is breach of contract and hence they are also liable to render their service, which they had failed to do so.

The point is answered accordingly.

10. POINT No.3:

Since Points 1 & 2 are answered in favour of the complainant, this point is also answered in favour of the complainant.

11. In the result, the complaint is allowed and the opposite party is directed to:

i) Extend the Annual Maintenance Contract for a further period of six months for the amount already paid by the complainant;

ii) Pay a sum of Rs.5,000/- (Rupees five thousand only) towards compensation for the deficiency in service and loss and suffering by the complainant; and

iii) Pay a sum of Rs.2,000/- (Rupees two thousand only) towards costs of the proceedings.

Dated at Pondicherry on this the 8th day of August, 2007.

(A. ASOKAN)

PRESIDENT

(T. SELLIAMMAL)

MEMBER

(K.K. RITHA)

MEMBER

COMPLAINANT’S WITNESS:

CW1 – Mani (complainant)

OPPOSITE PARTYIES’ WITNESS: NIL

COMPLAINANT’S EXHIBITS:

Ex.C1 – 26.03.2001 – Copy of certificate of training issued by DIC, Pondicherry to complainant.

Ex.C2 – 07.06.2001 – Copy of advanced stamped receipt for purchase of computer given by Electro Point Services.

Ex.C3 – 05.07.2005 – Copy of invoice issued by opposite party for purchase of component.

Ex.C4 – 01.07.2005 – Copy of annual maintenance contract between complainant and opposite party.

Ex.C5 – (series) - Copy of service reports (6 Nos.).

Ex.C6 – 08.09.2005 – Copy of invoice issued by opposite party for purchase of computer.

Ex.C7 – 24.09.2005 – Copy of bill for purchase of computer.

Ex.C8 – (series) - Copies of representation by complainant to opposite party (3 Nos.).

Ex.C9 – (series) - Copies of replies by opposite party to Ex.C8 (3 Nos.)

Ex.C10- 15.04.2006 – Copy of lawyer’s notice issued by complainant to opposite party.

Ex.C11- - Postal acknowledgement signed by opposite party.

OPPOSITE PARTIES’ EXHIBITS: NIL.

(A. ASOKAN)

PRESIDENT

(T. SELLIAMMAL)

MEMBER

(K.K. RITHA)

MEMBER

Courtesy_

http://164.100.72.12/ncdrcrep/judgement/35594CC.18-07.Service.Computer.Mani%20v.%20Siara%20Systems%20.html


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