The district consumer disputes redressal forum, Chandigarh, penalised Iffco Tokio General Insurance Company for rejecting the claim of Shiv Kumar of Yamunanagar for failing to provide route permit on which he plies his JCB machine.
Disposing of Kumar's complaint, the forum directed the insurance company to pay `15,000 as compensation, along with Rs. 7500 as cost of litigation.
The forum, which was presided over by PL Ahuja, ruled, “JCB machine is used for digging soil and is not a transport vehicle. It is not used for carriage of passengers or goods, therefore, we feel that it cannot be termed to be a transport vehicle and no route permit is required for it.”
“As JCB machine is not a transport vehicle, therefore, if the complainant did not furnish any route permit for driving it, the action of the insurance company in closing the claim amounts to unfair trade practice and is also a deficiency in service,” read the order dated October 24.
The forum held, “Contention of the insurance company that JCB is driven on the roads and highways for the purpose of taking it to the site where it is used for construction or other purposes, does not prove that the JCB machine is a transport vehicle.”
The forum also directed the insurance company to consider the claim of the complainant, amounting to Rs. 1.11 lakh in toto and make payment with 9% interest to him from June 2012 (date of filing of claim) till realisation.
Kumar moved complaint alleging that he owned a JCB machine that was insured with the insurance company on December 3, 2010.
He alleged that on October 30, 2011, his JCB machine broke down while working in the field. The complainant informed the insurance company immediately and on their advice, an estimate was prepared and vehicle was got repaired. He spent Rs. 1.11 lakh on repair and submitted claim to the insurance company, but despite repeated requests the company failed to settle the claim.
Justifying repudiation of the claim, Iffco Tokio General Insurance Company said the claim was rejected after Kumar failed to provide required documents.
The insurance company also said, “As a JCB is driven on roads and highways for the purpose of taking it to the site where it has to be used for construction or other purposes, it requires a route permit.”