Passing off cars meant for specific customers to other persons for a premium cost a lakh of rupees to Tricity Autos, the Zirakpur-based authorised dealer of Maruti, after the district consumer disputes redressal forum held the dealer guilty of malpractices.
Subash Chand, resident of sector 20, Panchkula, complained to the consumer forum about Tricity Autos' unfair trade practices and deficiency in services. As per the complaint, Subash Chand booked a Swift Dzire car with Tricity Autos on February 2, 2012 by paying Rs 50,000 and was assured the car's delivery within one month.
Subash Chand alleged that the dealer received the car meant for him from the manufacturer, but sold it to someone else on premium, which is an unfair trade practice. He added that on April 28, 2012, the dealer asked the complainant to deposit the entire price of the car and by April 30, the entire amount was paid.
Tricity Autos, on its part, denied the contention saying the complaint was not maintainable and was sheer abuse of the process of law. The counsel for the dealer said the complainant had initially booked a Swift Dzire ZDI car of blue colour, but had later changed it to white. The dealer maintained that his booking amount of Rs 7,49,400 has already been refunded in June 2012. Stating that the normal waiting period for delivery of a Swift Dzire ZDI car was five months, the dealer denied having promised the car delivery within one month.
Holding the Tricity Autos deficient in services, the forum held, "siphoning of the cars meant for specific customers to other persons for whatever consideration they thought fit….the dealer has not placed on record detailed statement showing the dispatch of Swift Dzire DZI cars by the manufacturer to them since the date of booking made by the complainant till the institution of the present complaint. Obviously, they have withheld vital information and are, therefore, guilty of non-transparency".
The forum observed that the behaviour of officials of the Tricity Autos with the complainant and refund of sale price of the car to the complainant without his request, withholding of details of record of dates of cars received from the manufacturer and their dates of delivery to the customers from the date of booking by the complainant till the date of institution of the complaint amounted to deficiency of service and unfair trade practice. Besides directing the dealer to deliver the car with 15 days to the complainant, the forum directed the dealer to pay Rs 10,000 as the cost of litigation.