Vyavasthapak C. Print
(India) Ltd. & ANR Vs. Laxmi Agro Chemical  INSC 84 (16 January 2009)
JURISDICTION CIVIL APPEAL NO.265 OF 2009 (Arising out of S.L.P. (C) No.5011 of
2007) Vyavasthapak C. Print and Anr. ...Appellant(s) Versus Laxmi Agro Chemical
O R D E R
Heard learned counsel
for the parties.
The District Consumer
Forum, Jalgaon, allowed the complaint of the respondent and directed the
appellants herein to pay Rs.3,07,500/- with nine per cent interest and cost of
Rupees two thousand. The appeal preferred against that order was dismissed by
the Maharashtra Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission [for short, `the State
Commission'], and appellate order has been confirmed by the National Consumer
Disputes Redressal Commission [for short, `the National Commission]. Hence,
this appeal by special leave.
appearing on behalf of the appellants submitted that the complainant was not a
"consumer" within the meaning of Section 2(1)(d) of the Consumer
Protection Act, 1986 (for short, `the Act') and the complaint was barred by
limitation, but without properly appreciating the arguments put forward on
behalf of the appellants, the District Forum and State and National Commissions
ruled in ....2/- -2- favour of the respondent. On the other hand, learned
counsel appearing on behalf of the respondent submitted that he was a
"consumer" within the meaning of Section 2 (1)(d) of the Act,
especially in view of the explanation thereto as the machine was purchased by
the complainant exclusively for earning livelihood by means of self-
employment. He further submitted that the complaint was not barred by
limitation and the District Forum did not commit any error by granting relief to
A perusal of the
record shows that both the parties had filed affidavits before the District
Forum in support of their respective pleadings, but no evidence was produced on
the issues whether the respondent is a "consumer" within the meaning
of Section 2(1)(d) of the Act and whether the complaint was within limitation.
In our view, having regard to the nature of controversy raised before it, the
District Forum should have afforded opportunities to the parties to lead
evidence and as the matter has been decided without taking recourse to that
procedure, the impugned orders are liable to be set aside.
appeal is allowed, impugned order are set aside and the matter is remitted to
the District Forum, Jalgaon, to decide the complaint afresh after giving
opportunity to the parties to adduce evidence. It is needless to say that the
question of limitation shall also be decided afresh by the District Forum.