Ram Shiv Kumar Vs. National Insurance Company Ltd.  Insc 33 (22 January 2001)
D.P.Mohapatro Shivaraj V. Patil,J.
Special Leave Petition (civil) 16945 of 2000
this appeal the controversy raised is limited in regard to payment of interest
and it arises out of the order passed by the National Consumer Disputes Redressal
Commission on execution side. For the purpose of disposal of this appeal it is
unnecessary to narrate the facts in detail. Hence we briefly state them as
under: - The appellant filed Original Petition No.30 of 1992 before the
National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (for short the National
Commission) against the respondent National Insurance Co. Ltd. The said
petition was allowed by the order of the National Commission dated 15.4.1993.
portion of it reads: - There is, therefore, no doubt that the repudiation of
the claim by the Opposite Party-Insurance Company is malafide. There has also
been inordinate delay in repudiating the claim depriving the complainant of a
sum of Rs.8,20,575/- which obviously would have caused serious inconvenience
and financial embarrassment of the insured.
therefore order as under:
opposite Party Insurance Co. should pay to the complainant-insured as under; 1.
Rs.8,20,575/- the full insured value of the consignment, actually paid by the
complainant for import of logs of wood. 2. Interest at the rate of 18% per
annum after the elapse of 6 months from the date of lodging of the claim on
12.2.1987 viz. from 12.6.1987. 3. A compensation of Rs.1.00 lakh for the
unjustified delay and harassment to the insured in repudiating the claim. 4.
Interest at the rate of 18% on the above mentioned amounts after 30 days of the
date of this order till the payment is made.
the said order of the National Commission the respondent filed Civil Appeal No.
3110/93 and the appellant filed Civil Appeal No. 4330/93 in this Court to the
extent they were aggrieved. This Court, by order dated 23.9.1999, disposed of
both the appeals. By the said order Civil Appeal No. 3110/93 was partly allowed
rejecting the claim of the appellant for compensation to the tune of Rs.1.00 lakh
and dismissed Civil Appeal No. 4330/93 filed by the appellant. While dealing
with Civil Appeal No. 3110/93, filed by the respondent, this Court has stated,
thus: - So far as the question of quantum of interest is concerned, we see no
infirmity in the order passed by the Commission except that the order of the
Commission requires a little alteration so that the date 12.6.1987 is altered
to 12.8.1987 in consonance with the judgment of the Commission itself.
amount of compensation to the tune of Rs. 1 lakh has been ordered by the
Commission on the ground of unjustified delay and harassment of the respondent.
Having regard to the facts of this case, specially the fact that the loss of
timber which was purchased was loaded at Malaysia and the ship which was to
come to Visakhapatnam was lost on High Sees and having regard to the further
fact that the investigation in the claim of the respondent who had initially
not furnished all the documents to the appellant, had to be carried in a
foreign country with the help of the surveyor, the appellant were justified in
taking time in repudiating the claim of the respondent after due investigation.
To that extent, therefore, the claim of the respondent is liable to be rejected
and is hereby rejected.
view of the above the appeal is partly allowed. The claim of the respondent for
compensation to the tune of Rs. 1 lakh allowed by the Commission is rejected
but the rest of the order is maintained. The appeal is disposed of in the
matter indicated above.
the amount paid by the respondent did not satisfy the claim fully, the
appellant filed execution petition before the National Commission being
Miscellaneous Petition No. 5/2000 (in Original Petition No. 30/1992).
National Commission passed the following order in the said Miscellaneous
petition: - We have read the papers. We are of the view that the order of the
Supreme Court is carried out by the Insurance Company. The Miscellaneous
Petition is disposed of.
this order, which is impugned in this appeal.
learned counsel for the appellant, pointing out to the order of this Court
dated 23.9.1999, aforementioned, contended that the order of the National
Commission giving direction for payment was confirmed by this Court except
direction 3, i.e., payment of the compensation of Rs.1.00 lakh for the unjustified
delay and harassment to the respondent in repudiating the claim. He added that
this Court did not find any infirmity as far as the question of payment of
interest is concerned. The learned counsel submitted that the National
Commission did not consider as to whether the entire amount that was to be paid
according to the order of the National Commission contained in directions 1, 2
and 4 as affirmed by this Court, was paid to the appellant or not; without
anything more the National Commission simply stated that the order of the
Supreme Court was carried out by the Insurance Company; hence the Miscellaneous
Petition was disposed of. The learned counsel further submitted that a
certificate issued by the Chartered Accountant clearly shows that an amount of
Rs.4,02,649/- is still due to be paid to the appellant, calculated on the basis
of the order by the National Commission as modified by this Court.
learned counsel for the respondent submitted that this Court in Civil Appeal
No. 3110/93, while granting interim order, directed the respondent to deposit a
sum of Rs.8,20,575/- with interest at the rate of 12% per annum from 12.8.1987
within six weeks with the liberty to the appellant to withdraw the said amount;
the respondent accordingly deposited a sum of Rs.13,91,995.44; since the
respondent had already deposited the amount along with interest of 12% per
annum, it was not liable to pay 6% interest on the principal amount of
Rs.8,20,575/-. The learned counsel further urged that the National Commission having
ordered for payment of interest at the rate of 18% per annum as per direction
2, payment of further interest at the rate of 18% per annum on the amount
mentioned in directions 1 and 2 amounts to granting interest on interest.
have considered the submissions of the learned counsel for the parties. It is
clear from the order dated 23.9.1999 of this Court that the order of the
National Commission stood confirmed except direction 3 given in the operative
portion of the order of the National Commission.
Court on 30.10.2000 in the present case at the SLP stage, had passed the
following order:- Notice will be issued to show cause why the matter should not
be disposed of on the basis of the Certificate issued by the Chartered
Accountant of the petitioner, dated 24.8.2000.
National Commission unfortunately has not gone into the details and did not
discuss as to the rival contentions. We do not see any difficulty in accepting
the contentions urged on behalf of the appellant that the order of the National
Commission dated 15.4.1993 was confirmed by this Court except direction 3 and a
correction of date with regard to payment of interest in direction 2 from
12.6.1987 to 12.8.1987. Hence the respondent was bound to satisfy the claim of
the appellant including the interest as stated in item 4 of the order of the
National Commission. It is not an interest over interest but it is an interest
awarded on delayed payment. Merely because this Court, while granting an
interim order, directed the respondent to deposit a sum of Rs.8,20,575/- with
interest thereon at the rate of 12% per annum in Civil Appeal No.3110/93
pending disposal of the appeal, it cannot be said that liability of the
appellant to pay interest at the rate of 18% per annum as per direction 4 of
the order of the National Commission, ceased Under these circumstances we find
merit in the appeal.
light of what is stated above, the respondent is liable to pay the remaining
amount as indicated in the certificate issued by the Chartered Accountant in
terms of the order of the National Commission dated 15.4.1993 as modified by
the order of this Court dated 23.9.1999 in Civil Appeal No. 3110/93. The
respondent is entitled to deduct the amount already paid to the appellant. We
make it clear that the respondent is not liable to pay interest from the date
on which such amount has actually been received by the appellant in terms of
the order of the National Commission as modified by this Court.
appeal is allowed accordingly. There shall be no order as to costs.