First Appeal No. FA/135/2013. Case: National Insurance Co. Ltd. Vs The Ethelbari Tea Co. Ltd.. West Bengal State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission

Case NumberFirst Appeal No. FA/135/2013
CounselFor Appellant: Swarajit Dey, Advocate and For Respondents: P.R. Bakshi, Advocate
JudgesDebasis Bhattacharya, (Presiding Member) and Jagannath Bag, Member
IssueIndian Contract Act, 1872 - Section 18(1)
Judgement DateJanuary 06, 2017
CourtWest Bengal State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission


Debasis Bhattacharya, (Presiding Member)

  1. Challenge under this appeal is the Order dated 20-12-2012, passed by the Ld. District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, Kolkata, Unit-I (for short, District Forum), in C.C. No. 111/2010, whereby the complaint case has been allowed. Being aggrieved by and dissatisfied with the same, OPs thereof have preferred this appeal.

  2. In short, case of the Complainant, is that, on or about 08-04-2009, at around 8 p.m., part of its tea estate was hit by severe hailstorm, which caused huge loss and damage to the tea crop in the said Tea Estate. The Complainant intimated the said matter to the OP Insurance Company vide its letter dated 10-04-2009. However, by a letter dated 17-04-2009, the OP No. 1 informed the Complainant that as per the condition of the said policy, claim of the Complainant was not admissible. Although the Complainant lodged strong protest against such arbitrary repudiation of its claim, the OP Insurer remained unmoved. Hence, the case was filed before the Ld. District Forum.

  3. Case of the OPs, briefly narrated, is that, insurance is an agreement between the Insurer and Insured and under this agreement, Insurer promises and agrees with the Insured that it would indemnify the loss/damage/liability or expenses subject to clause, endorsement, conditions and warranties contained in the schedule. Therefore, any insurance payable under the policy is subject to strict compliance of the conditions mentioned in the policy certificate. It is further stated that under special conditions and Warranty Clause (1), it was clearly mentioned that no claim was payable for hail storm had it occurred within first 30 days from the date of inception of the certificate. Therefore, the claim was rightly repudiated by them.

  4. Point for determination is whether the impugned Order is justified, or not.

    Decision with reasons

  5. It appears, the Respondent took two insurance policies, viz., Policy No. 100700/21/09/4900000005 in the name of Sarugaon Tea Estate and another Policy being No. 100700/21/09/4900000006 in the name of Ethelbari Tea Company for a sum insured of Rs. 56,00,000/- and Rs. 5,20,00,000/-, respectively. Both the policies were effective for the period from 01-04-2009 to 31-03-2010. It is stated that on 08-04-2009, hail storm struck Ethelbari Tea Estate causing severe damage to the tea crop.

  6. The bone of contention, as it appears, mainly floats around the fact as to whether or not the claim as...

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