By Adv. Jatin Ramaiya
According to the consumer court, a consumer is a person who purchases a product or avails a service for a consideration either for his personal use or to earn his livelihood by means of self employment. Filing a complaint on behalf of someone else does not work, as the following complaint reveals.
Mahadev Anant Manerkar, Valpoi resident, approached the Consumer Forum North Goa complaining against mobile dealer Mobitech Infocom and manufacturing giant Vivo Mobile India alleging deficiency in service. In his complaint Manerkar stated that he purchased Vivo V7 Plus mobile phone from the dealer for a total amount of Rs 22,000. However, Manerkar said that, within one month of the purchase the handset started giving problems. He said that the handset was hanging and the camera thereof was not working properly which was highly unacceptable as it was only a month old.
Manerkar claimed that despite repeated follow ups to claim warranty of the phone with the dealer he was informed by the dealer to give the phone to an authorized service centre who also blamed him for damaging the phone by putting it into water. Manerkar claimed that the dealer falsely claimed repair charges of Rs 3,500 and therefore he was forced to approach the Forum complaining about conduct of the manufacturer and dealer.
In his complaint Manerkar claimed that he was entitled to a direction that the dealer and manufacturer be ordered to replace the defected the handset and further pay costs to the tune of Rs 50,000 as well as compensation of Rs 72,000. The members of the forum heard the arguments advanced on behalf of Manerkar and held that the complaint filed by him is not maintainable. They held that the Manerkar had no locus standi to filed complaint against the manufacturer and dealer as he had not purchased the said handset in his name. The Forum observed on perusal of the complaint and documents annexed to the complaint that the said mobile phone was purchased by one Pritesh and not by the complainant. “This fact we gather from the bill produced by the complainant as well as the incomplete warranty card. It is, therefore clear that complainant has not purchased the mobile. It is not even the case of the complainant in the entire complaint that the said mobile was purchased by Pritesh and same was given for use to the complainant and that the complainant is a beneficiary. In these circumstances, at the first instance we find that complainant, Mahadev Anant Manerkar does not have any locus standi to file the present complaint.”