Observing that “a human fallibility to forget is not the same as committing violation of (the) terms of the policy”, the consumer forum has directed an insurance firm to pay an Insured Declared Value (IDV) of Rs 46,313 of a stolen scooter to a Sangrur resident whose claim was rejected on the grounds that it was left unlocked with the key left behind. The forum has also directed Oriental Insurance to pay Rs 25,000 as compensation and Rs 10,000 as litigation charges to the complainant, Balwinder Singh, whose daughter’s TVS Wego was stolen outside Rose Garden, Chandigarh.
Singh had purchased the TVS Wego on November 19, 2014, and got it insured from Oriental Insurance with an IDV of Rs 46,313. On August 26, 2015, the vehicle was stolen by some unknown person from the main parking of Rose Garden at Sector 17 in Chandigarh. A case was registered at Sector 17 police station and an intimation given to the insurance firm, upon which they deputed their surveyor who assessed the loss and submitted his report.
Singh alleged that despite submission of the required documents to the insurance firm, it lingered on the matter on one pretext or the other. Following this, Singh served a legal notice to the firm on January 1, 2017, but to no avail, he said. Then he moved a complaint at the consumer forum, which was disposed of on August 29, 2017, with a direction to settle the claim of Singh and pay Rs 5,000 as cost of delaying it.
However, notwithstanding this, the insurance firm failed to settle the claim of Singh who again moved a complaint at the forum on November 17, 2017.
The Oriental Insurance, in its reply, stated that the complainant did not disclose that his daughter, while talking over her mobile phone, had forgot to lock the scooter and also left the ignition key in the switch and that in this way Singh had committed fundamental breach of the terms and conditions of the policy, for which the claim was rightly repudiated.
The forum observed, “…a human fallibility to forget is not the same as committing violation of (the) terms of the policy. It is, therefore, clear that the driver of the vehicle did not exhibit negligent attitude and the opposite party – the insurance company – is not justified in repudiating the well-founded and genuine claim of the complainant…”
The forum opined that the repudiation of the claim of the complainant is wholly unjustified and amounts to deficiency in service.