Free Legal Advice Find a Consumer Court Advocate  Get your case drafted

      Most often Consumers and Consumer Courts are confused when the agreement between a Company / manufacturer and the consumer specifically provides a clause in the agreement for Arbitration. Herein below is the explanation for the same.

    The Hon’ble National Commission while ruling in SMT. KALAWATI & ORS. VS M/S. UNITED VAISH CO-OPERATIVE THIRFT & CREDIT SOCIETY LTD. ( 2002CPJ71NCDRC) quoted Section 3 of CPA which provides as under:

    “3. Act not in derogation of any other law.- The provisions of this Act shall be in addition to and not in derogation of the provisions of any other law for the time being in force.”

    The National Commission observed that Section 3 is worded in widest terms and leaves no one in doubt that the provisions of CPA shall be in addition and not in derogation of any other law for the time being in force. Thus even if any other Act provides for any remedy to a litigant for redressal of that remedy a litigant can go to District Forum if he is a ‘consumer’ under CPA. That remedy exists in any other law which creates the right is no bar to District Forum assuming jurisdiction. The National Commission laid that a District Forum was not considered a Civil Court though it may have the trappings of a Civil Court. Neither it was considered a revenue court. It was viewed by National Commission that Section 93 of Societies Act would not come in the way of the District Forum assuming jurisdiction. Further it was opined that those enactments which use the word court the jurisdiction of the court is barred and not of Consumer Forum. But other acts which use the words not only ‘court’ but also ‘other authority’. District Forum is certainly “other authority” as it is not a court. Both these two Acts certainly bar the jurisdiction of a District Forum to take cognizance of the matter which falls exclusively in the jurisdiction of the Tribunal established under these Acts. Thus it was held that complainants were certainly consumers and could maintain their complaints in the District Forum.

For Detailed Judgment Contact Us.