PUNE: The district consumer forum has ordered Country Vacation firm to refund Rs 1.45 lakh membership fee to a complainant for not providing agreed services. The company has to pay the amount with 9 per cent interest since February 2012 besides Rs 5,000 compensation.
Umesh Sharma, a resident of Magarpatta, Hadapsar, had moved the forum in 2013. He had purchased the membership by paying lifetime membership fees of Rs 1.45 lakh on February 28, 2012.
The company, which provides hospitality services, had explained various facilities such as free transport facility, free parlour facility, function place, discount on air-ticket and food, etc.
Sharma was intending to celebrate the birthday of his child together with 30 to 40 people. However, the company had not provided the facilities as agreed.
“They had shown one congested restaurant, which was not convenient. Also, the behaviour of company executives was not proper. Thereafter, I asked for club cards. It was assured that cards will be dispatched within 15 days. However, the cards were received in August 2012 when it was sought in March 2012. The cards were for only myself and my wife. However, no card was given to my child. Even though it was assured that I will get a golden card that could be used even out of India but, in fact, blue cards were supplied, which could be used only within India,” Sharma stated in his complaint.
Also, when he was intending to visit Goa for New Year celebrations, he intimated the company about it in August and asked for booking in the first week of November 2012. In December-2012, the complainant had received a reply from the firm that the booking was full. “Thus, all these assurances given by the company were a futile exercise,” he added.
Hence, he demanded a refund of Rs 1.45 lakh together with compensation of Rs 50,000 and legal expenses of Rs 25,000.
The company officials appeared before the forum and denied that they had not provided facilities as per the demand of the complainant. “There is club facility at Kondhwa, Pune. Instances that are quoted by the complainant as a deficiency in services are not true. Also, this forum has no jurisdiction to entertain the complaint as their head office is situated in Hyderabad,” the firm stated in written submission before the forum.
However, as all the transactions had taken place here and the company also has a branch office in Pune, the forum directed the company to refund the membership fees with interest.