Pune: A man from Hadapsar has won a case against Hyundai Motors India Ltd and Kothari Cars Pvt Ltd in the District Consumer Forum after he lost valuables from his car even though an anti-theft alarm system was installed. The two companies have been asked to compensate him for the losses.
Vaibhav Dhawale had filed the complaint in the District Consumer Forum in this regard in 2014. He had purchased a car for Rs 8 lakh in 2012 from Hyundai company through their authorised dealer Kothari Cars, Tilak Road. He had also purchased a theft alarm system from the dealer. He used to get his car serviced from the dealer only.
As per his complaint, on October 12, 2013, he was passing through Mundhwa, when he parked his car near Lonkar High School. After he returned he found the door and front window-glass on the driver’s side was broken. It was further found that a tablet of I-ball company, smart-card, headphone and charger, were stolen. Dhawale immediately lodged a FIR with Mundhwa police station in this regard.
“At the time of the commission of theft, the theft alarm system was not activated. Hence, valuables were stolen. I had relied upon the theft alarm system. But that product was defective,” Dhawale stated in his complaint.
The Hyundai company in its reply before the forum denied that there is any inherent manufacturing problem in the theft alarm system. The company raised various inconsistent defences, the forum observed. “At the time of servicing prior to the alleged incident, the complainant did not make any complaint about the alarm.
The system will be armed if the front or rear door is opened without using the transmitter. If the theft occurred by breaking the window glass without opening the door, theft alarm system will not work.
Also, the complainant had been at a longer distance and hence, he was not able to listen to the sound of the alarm. In these circumstances, the system might not have been activated,” the car manufacturer stated. The forum judgement reads that though the dealer appeared before the forum, it failed to file a written version on record, as called for by the forum.
The forum passed an order on July 19 directing both the parties to pay Rs 10,300 as the value of stolen goods, with 9 per cent interest from February 2014 when the complaint was filed. They were also ordered to pay Rs 5,000 towards mental agony and cost of the complaint.
“It is significant to note that the complainant had purchased the theft alarm system with an intention to safeguard his car. If the theft alarm system could not be activated for any reason, it counts as deficiency in service. If the opposite parties have failed to provide foolproof theft alarm system, that is the defect in the goods as well as deficiency in service,” states the judgement given by forum president VP Utpat and members Onkar Patil and Kshitija Kulkarni.