Standard Chartered Bank penalized for wrongfully seizing car from loanee
By Vaibhav Aggarwal
Oct 17, 2012
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Standard Chartered Bank's plea against a district forum order, directing it to pay Rs. 2.97 lakh to a customer for deficient services, was dismissed by the Delhi State Consumer Commission. In the light of the evidences, the state consumer commission decided that the district forum's order was justified and should be upheld.

A district forum had directed the foreign bank to pay a customer for seizing her vehicle for non-payment of a small amount of loan (Rs. 30, 000) and then selling it off even though she had repaid all the dues. The customer complained that her car was sold by the bank authorities after she refused to take its possession as allegedly the car had a number of missing parts, due to which it was not in a condition to be driven.

The Delhi State Consumer Commission said that, "It appears that statement of respondent (loanee) that the vehicle was not in a condition for taking possession needs to be accepted. It is evident that on one hand the appellant bank (Standard Chartered) is entering into an arrangement to return the car on payment of Rs 30,000 and on the other hand its officers allowed parts of the car to be removed which is a case of negligence and serious deficiency-in-service. We are of considered opinion that a case of deficiency in service is made out beyond doubt and to serve the ends of justice it would not be proper to interfere with the order of the district forum. The appeal is accordingly dismissed."

Though the bank admits that the complainant, Miss Sunita Verma, had paid all her dues towards her car loan (Rs. 30, 000), but it contested that the vehicle was sold following her refusal to take it back.

The district forum found Standard Chartered Bank guilty for poor service and ordered it to pay Rs. 2.37 lakh to her as refund of the loan repayment amount and another a Rs. 60, 000 in the form of compensation and litigation cost.

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