Consumers’ casual attitude won’t be entertained


By Jatin Ramaiya

Jimmy Gracias, resident of Salcete approached the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum at South Goa Margao, complaining against ICICI Bank and others. Gracias said that he was entitled for relief from ICICI Bank for damages worth Rs 13.60 lakh and an amount of Rs 1,000 per day from the date of filing the complaint until his name of is deleted from the Cibil Consumer Credit Information Report which according to him was unlawfully and illegally added by ICICI Bank.   Gracias argued that he had suffered mental trauma and failed in availing loan from a reputed bank as ICICI Bank had wrongly added his name as a defaulter for an amount of Rs 1.37 lakh in February 15 2009. He said that when he approached the officer of ICICI Bank and protested that therefore he was not liable to pay any of the said amounts. The branch manager directed him to approach the Panaji office. Further the manager in Panjim office said that he would look into the matter and settle the issue.

Gracias in the meantime had approached a reputed bank in Margao for availing loan however, on account of being shown as a defaulter in the Cibil Consumer Credit Information Report the loan was refused to him. It caused him inconvenience and hardship. Upon refusal of the loan  Gracias issued a legal notice to the ICICI Bank and its officer seeking deletion of his name from the defaulter records.

Gracias said that rather than complying his notice the officer’s ICICI Bank issued a legal notice demanding the payment of the said sum of Rs 1.37 lakh.

Upon perusing the complaint, the documents and records, the forum dismissed the complaint on several counts. The Forum observed that complaint was not filed within two years from the date of cause of action and that Gracias had not filed an application for condonation of delay.

Moreover it was observed by the forum that the complainant ought to have been prudent and should have  pursued  the  issue soon  after  the  he was shown as a defaulter on February 15 2009. The complainant should have accept that one would  blindly rely on the word of the  ‘Branch Manager of the ICICI Bank, Panaji Goa promising to look into and settle the matter’ and would not consistently check whether it was done.

Besides the Complainant should have followed up and redressed his grievance before the Forum. However, the Forum also whilst commenting on the merits of the case also observed that  Gracias could not prove that his name was illegally added as defaulter and also that the bank he had approached for financial assistances, had refused his request on the count that his name figured as a defaulter.