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HindustanTimes Sat,23 Aug 2014

Bank told to pay Rs. 10,000 to card cloning victim

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times  Chandigarh, October 22, 2013
First Published: 01:04 IST(22/10/2013) | Last Updated: 01:05 IST(22/10/2013)

Holding ICICI bank deficient in services, the district consumer disputes redressal forum has directed it to pay Rs. 10,000 to a Sector-38 resident, reportedly a victim of credit card cloning.

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While disposing the complaint filed by Kunal Thakur, the forum also directed the bank to waive off the disputed amount of Rs. 24,500 along with interest with late payment charges and other miscellaneous expenses till the time the matter is finally adjudicated by the authorities. The bank was also told to pay Rs. 5,100 as cost of litigation.

Claiming to be a victim of credit card cloning, Thakur had moved the consumer forum seeking directions to the bank to waive off disputed amount of Rs. 24,500. He said the act of the bank to continue levying interest and late payment charges on the disputed amount tantamounts to harassment and deficiency in services.

As per Thakur, on December 9, 2012, his credit card was swiped at Divine Gizmos, New Delhi, for Rs. 24,500 in an unauthorised manner, as the credit card was in his possession his Chandigarh home at the time of the transaction. He said after receiving an SMS regarding the transaction, he immediately called up the bank customer care and got the credit card blocked.
 
He said the bank credited amount pertaining to the disputed transaction of Rs. 24,500 into his account. But later he was shocked to know that the bank had taken a U-turn. It intimated Thakur that the waiver was just a temporary relief and he was asked to pay the amount involved in the disputed transaction.

The bank, in its written reply, had pleaded that the dispute raised by the complainant relates to alleged fraudulent use of the credit card, which was in the custody of the complainant at the time when it was used and that the forum did not have the jurisdiction to hear the complaint. It said as the customer was intimated that the amount stood reversed, he was liable to pay the same along with delayed payment charges.

The consumer forum presided over by PL Ahuja, said, “We feel that once the bank was satisfied that the transaction through the credit card of the complainant was fraudulent and accordingly provided a temporary credit to his card account, it is not understandable as to why the credit of Rs. 24,500 was reversed without any detailed inquiry.”

In its order, the forum held, “We find deficiency in services on part of the bank in dissuading the complainant to lodge an FIR immediately and then further reversing the credit provided and then reversing the credit entry of Rs. 24,500.”

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