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Rashmi Mishra (Student)     23 April 2010




In the normal course of business, various defects are noted in the equipments / machinery purchased by a Company. Can complaint be filed against the seller of machinery, before the Consumer Forum for such defects. Or purchase of equipment for commercial purpose is outside the purview of the Consumer Protection Act.. ?


 14 Replies


Using of the equipment/machinery for commercial purposes is not an embargo under the Consumer Protection Act. The complaint by the aggrieved person/company is maintainable.

Devajyoti Barman (Advocate)     24 April 2010

No, equipment purchased solely for the purpose of commercial use can not be brouight to the jurisdiction of the Consumer Forum.


Then what about equipments used by doctors to treat their patients, what about equipments used by hospitals for treating their patients (which is purely commercial), what about our advocates who use computers, printers, faxes for our clients ? Are they not entitled to move Consumer Forum for poor quality/defects in them Shri Barman sir?

Devajyoti Barman (Advocate)     24 April 2010

Yes the computer for the use of the lawyer , the equipment for the use of the doctors are not directly linked with for commercial pueposes. Those are used to aid the performance of the service provider. A persona purchasing a faulty computer can bring the manufacturer to the consumer forum but a car manufacturing company can not the bring the manufacturer of a any faulty parts of its assembling units.

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But instead of pre-judging an issue, i would suggest the querist Rashmi Mishra to make an attempt to file a Complaint in Consumer Forum against the manufacturer and may convince the Forum to bring it under the CP Act. I am still confident that the Forum may take a different view. If this kind of defences are taken by the manufacturers, then the object of the CP Act will be defeated.

venkatkrishna (AGM)     27 April 2010

CP.Act 1986  sec 2 (1) (d)  says  " ...........does not include a person who obtains such goods for resale or for any commercial purpose".   There is no ambiguity  in this.  If  Doctor & Lawyers computer is defective,  they can approach consumer court.  First  thing  they are not doing  Business. They  do service.  Next  the  computer purchased  is by doctor or  Lawyer  is neither for resale nor  for commercial.   Mr.D.Barman  some how  is  correct.  Goods  purchased for commercial purpose will not come under the purview of  the C.P.Act. 1986.

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If it is proved that the defective equipment is used for commercial purpose, then I am sorry for recommending C.P. Act as a legal remedy. I thank Shri Barman and Shri Venkatkrishna in properly leading me as well as the querist.

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Rashmi Mishra (Student)     01 May 2010

Dear all respected sir, thanks to all of you for such a nice discussion & answer.

I want to know how the word "COMMERCIAL PURPOSE" should be defined? as per my understanding, commercial purpose means which is used in the business / service activity. e.g. if a manufacturing or transport company is using trucks for transportation or a doctor using equipments or a lawyer using computers. What if these tools, equipments, machineries etc are used only in the business activities of the organisation?

thank u.

Sushil Kumar Bhatia (Advocate)     01 May 2010

If any machinary,equipment or vehicle purchased for the livlihood inspite of commercial activity will come under ambit of consumer protection act and purchaser is a consumer for example a truck purchased by driver for self driving and he is earning for his livlihood is consumer  and if such truck is leased to transport company and hiring it or any agency purchasing it for further sale then it will be called commercial activity

Kanaksinh P.Boda (Educationist/Lawyer)     04 May 2010

I agree with Bhatiaji. If it can be proved that the equipment purchased was for sole purpose of  earning livelyhood, than it fits in to the ambit of Consumer Fora- A Doctor purchased a heavy machinery for his clinic, if mantains that the said clinic and the equipments are the source of earning livelyhood, it gets covered. Same rule may apply here, if putforth appropriately.

Pankaj Rai (Lawyer)     11 May 2010

I agree with MR. Bhatia.

Kuldeep Gauniyal (Sr Manager - Legal)     23 June 2014

Then where can a Company file complaint against errant manufacturer?

Dr. MPS RAMANI Ph.D.[Tech.] (Scientist/Engineer)     23 June 2014

@ Kuldeep Gauniyal

In a civil court. The question of balance of convenience also will arise. General in a commercial transaction the purchaser will be mighty compared to the seller (manufacturer). The purchaser will generally hold back payment until the equipment is supplied, tested and proven. Any advance payment he would make, will have to be covered by bank guarantee by the seller. If the seller supplies defective equipment he will be blacklisted by the purchaser and other purchasers also may follow suit. The survival of the seller will be at stake.

The term consumer means the ultimate consumer. The goods will not get travel further. In consumer transactions the seller will be one and the purchasers will be many. Any individual purchaser will be weak against the mughty seller. He would need protection of the law.

In commercial dealings the purchaser will be one and sellers many. Or a single purchaser may purchase the entire production of one seller. If the purchaser blacklists the seller the latter is doomed. Hence the Protection of CPA is not available to the commercial purchaser.

A doctor, lawyer or an engineer may buy just one computer or at the most a few computers. The computer manufacturer will not be dependent on each one of them. On the other hand a big commercial firm will buy computers in thousands. If the computer manufacturer gets a rate contract that would be enough for his survival, say, for one year. But at the same time the computer seller will be afraid of the purchaser lest the latter may cancel the rate contract.


Kuldeep Gauniyal (Sr Manager - Legal)     23 June 2014

Thank you Dr. Ramani.

The Company has purchased a costly TV set for its own use at its office.  The TV developes some snags during warranty period and manufacturer does not listen.  What sections of CPC can be invoked by the Purchaser.

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