BEFORE THE A.P.STATE CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL COMMISSION : AT HYDERABA



FA No.629/2006 against CD.No.1272/2004 District Consumer Forum-III, Hyderabad.



Between:

Dr.N.Ranganayakulu, S/o.Olate Mahabaleshwar Rao,

Aged about 58 years, Occ: Doctor,

R/o.T.F.No.6, H.No.2-2-5, Usha Kiran Arcade, Osmania University

Road, Hyderabad.

…Appellant/Complainant.

And

The Branch Manager,

National Insurance Company Limited,

Tarnaka Branch Office,

Tarnaka, Secunderabad.

…Respondent/Opp.Party.



Counsel for the Appellant : M/s.I.Laxmikantha Rao.

Counsel for the Respondent : Mr.Kota Subba Rao.





QUORUM: THE HON’BLE SRI JUSTICE D.APPA RAO, HON’BLE PRESIDENT,

SMT.M.SHREESHA, HON’BLE LADY MEMBER,

AND

SRI K.SATYANAND, HON’BLE MALE MEMBER.



THURSDAY, THE SECOND DAY OF APRIL,

TWO THOUSAND NINE.



Oral Order (Per Sri Justice D.Appa Rao, Hon’ble President)

*******



1. Appellant is the unsuccessful complainant.

2. The case of the complainant in brief is that he had taken a policy covering perils to his house situate at Guntur valid from 17.4.2002 to 16.4.2003 for an amount of Rs.30,00,000/-. While so on 18.4.2002, the Municipal Corporation demolished the building illegally without issuing any notice for which he gave a complaint to the police and later a notice. He submitted claim for Rs.10,75,000/- to the Insurance Company. A surveyor was appointed who visited the place. However, the Insurance Company did not settle his claim despite a notice and therefore, filed the complaint for recovery of Rs.11,00,000/- for the loss, besides costs.

3. The Insurance Company resisted the case. It alleged that it had issued a fire policy for the house belonging to the complainant. Since the demolition was made by the Municipal authorities on the ground that it was an unauthorized construction and it did not cover the terms of the policy, the same was repudiated. They were not liable to pay any amount.

4. The complainant in proof of his case filed his affidavit evidence and got Exs.A.1 to A.7 marked The Insurance Company filed affidavit evidence of its Administrative Officer and got Exs.B.1 and B.2 marked.

5. The District Forum after considering the evidence placed on record opined that the demolition that said to have been caused was by a lawfully constituted authority. Clauses XII A and 14 (a) of the terms and conditions exclude its liability. Since the same was not covered by the terms of the policy, the complaint was dismissed.

6. Aggrieved by the said decision, the complainant preferred this appeal contending that the District Forum did not appreciate the facts in correct perspective. The damage caused by the public authority is within the scope of the policy. Having accepted the premium, it ought to have settled the claim.

7. The point that arises for consideration is whether the order under appeal is vitiated by misappreication of fact?

8. It is an undisputed fact that the complainant had taken a policy for Rs.30,00,000/- for the period from 17.4.2002 to 16.4.2003 covering the risk of fire of his house, evidenced under Ex.B.1. It is also not in dispute that on 18.4.2002 the Municipal Corporation authorities had demolished the said building. Alleging that the damage was to a tune of Rs.10,75,000/- he laid a claim.

9. Evidently, Ex.B.1 policy was taken to cover a peril of fire. Under the head “the type of policy” it was noted as “fire policy”. When the complainant had violated the building rules, it prompted the Municipal Corporation to demolish the building. There is no evidence that there was no violation of the building rules nor the action of the Municipal authorities is illegal. Assuming that it were to be so he had taken policy to cover fire mishap. He did not take policy to cover other perils. As such he cannot turn round and contend that the other terms and conditions like theft, strike, damage by illegal methods would also cover. We may state that if that were to be true, Clause V (b) excludes the liability of the Insurance Company which reads as follows:

“Permanent or temporary dispossession resulting from confiscation, commandeering, requisition or destruction by order of the Government or any lawfully constituted Authority.”

10. The municipal authorities cannot be said to be an unlawfully constituted authority. In any view of the matter, the complainant is not entitled to the amount covered under the policy. We do not see any irregularity in appreciation of the fact or law in this regard by the District Forum. We do not see any merits in the appeal.



11. In the result, the appeal is dismissed with costs of Rs.2,000/-.



PRESIDENT LADY MEMBER MALE MEMBER

Dt:2.4.2009.