Holding National Insurance Company Limited deficient in services for undervaluing a dead cow for paying the claim, the Chandigarh district consumer disputes redressal forum has directed the firm to pay a compensation of Rs. 11,000 to a Maloya resident besides paying the remaining Rs. 10,000 of the claim with interest.
The forum presided over by PL Ahuja held, “The insurance company cannot reduce the amount of the value of the deceased cow merely on the opinion of investigator, who has not even indicated his qualification in the investigation report.”
Harichint Singh, resident of Maloya Dairy Complex, who had got Rs. 15,000 as claim against an entitlement of Rs. 25,000, would get to remaining Rs. 10,000 with 9% interest from January 24, 2013 till the realisation. In his complaint before the forum, he said he had insured five cows for Rs. 1.4 lakh with the firm for one year in June 2012. One cow died on December 6, 2012, of illness. It was treated at the government veterinary hospital in Sector 38. As he filed the insurance claim, the company relying on the surveyor's report paid him Rs. 15,000. He filed an objection and sought Rs. 25,000, but the company did not budge.
The company said that as per the report of the surveyor, the cow had eight complete teeth, so its age was eight years and not six, thus reducing its value.
But the forum order dated October 14 said, “The market value of the deceased cow in the health certificate attached with the cover note was Rs. 25,000, and the veterinary doctor who treated the deceased cow while conducting its post-mortem examination indicated the value prior to the illness as Rs. 25,000… The action of the insurance company in making the payment of Rs. 15,000 instead of Rs. 25,000 declared as market value at the time of insurance amounts to unfair trade practice as well as deficiency in service.”