CIVIL APPEAL NO. 4718 OF 2022
Alpha G184 Owners Association V Magnum International Trading Company Pvt. Ltd.
DATE OF ORDER:
J.K.Maheshwari, M.M. Sundresh
Petitioner: Alpha G184 Owners Association
Respondent: Magnum International Trading Company Pvt. Ltd.
According to the J.K. Maheshwari and M.M. Sundresh bench, "the requirement for the application of Order I Rule 8 of the CPC, which speaks of a plaintiff representing the other public as a whole, would be required only in a case incorporating a complaint under Section 12(1)(c) of the 1986 Act."
- According to a certificate dated 01.11.2017, the appellant in this case is an association created by the allottees and registered under Section 6 of the Haryana Registration and Regulation of Societies Act, 2012. The responder is a contractor entrusted with creating a home development.
- The appellant approached the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission by filing a Consumer Complaint initially on behalf of 54 allottees, and later, a few others, alleging that the respondent was in default in its obligation to construct and finish the promised flats within the agreed-upon, with failing to pay compensation for the delay made at its instance and questioning the additional demands raised.
- As a result, consumer complaints have been submitted in Consumer Complaints. The appellant files these complaints on behalf of the designated allottees.
- Following the interim order, pleadings in the Consumer Complaint were finished, followed by affidavits filed by the appellant, as well as individual affidavits of the allottees. At that point, the respondent filed a writ petition in the Delhi High Court, which was stayed by this Court in an order dated August 20, 2018.
- The State Registrar of Haryana ordered the appellant to alter its bye-laws within six months, stating that failure to do so would result in the cancellation of the registration that had already been granted. Dissatisfied, the appellant filed an appeal with the Registrar General of Haryana.
- Because nothing happened in the proceedings before the Registrar General of Haryana, and without prejudice to its claims, the appellant did file an amendment, which was officially registered by the District Registrar of Gurugram on November 8, 2019.
- The respondent in the review case filed an additional affidavit before the National Commission, relying on the order of the Registrar General of Haryana, which is undergoing adjudication before the High Court.
- Similarly, the appellant filed an application notifying the National Commission of the pending writ petition and stay application.
- The challenged orders deferred all issues, including the interlocutory applications, pending appropriate orders in the writ case.
ARGUMENTS ON BEHALF OF APPELLANT
- Sr. Adv. Narendra Hooda contended that the case before the High Court had nothing to do with the proceedings before the National Commission while speaking on behalf of the appellants (allottees). It was maintained that because the allottees submitted individual affidavits, the National Commission should not have postponed the case due to a death.
ARGUMENTS ON BEHALF OF RESPONDENT
- The respondent (builder), represented by attorney Debesh Panda, maintained that the matter before the Commission was unmaintainable because the association had never been registered.
ANALYSIS OF JUDGEMENT
- The bench remarked that the Consumer Protection Act, 1986; 68 of 1986, and the Consumer Protection Act, 2019; 35 of 2019 both have admirable goals. The 2019 Act makes it easier for consumers to approach forums by establishing a fairly flexible method. It is intended to promote consumerism in the country. Any technical approach to construing the provisions against the consumer would contradict the purpose of the legislation.
- The Supreme Court cited the case of National Insurance Co. Ltd. v. Harsolia Motors, in which it was said that "the Act, 1986 is a social benefit-oriented legislation, and thus the Court must adopt a constructive liberal approach in construing the Act's provisions." To begin with, the Preamble of the Act of 1986, which might be relevant in determining the legislative objective, was enacted to defend the interests of consumers. The word "protection" provides a key to the ideas of the Act's authors. Various definitions and provisions that extensively strive to achieve this goal must be understood in this light while adhering to the known norm that a Preamble cannot restrict the otherwise plain interpretation of a section."
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