Telephone Bill Complaint
By Smt. Padmini Sudheesh, President:
Complainantís case is as follows: The complainant is an Advocate and consumer of the respondents having a telephone No.2500049. The respondents issued a telephone bill No.82635315 on 12.8.05 with charges for his Cell phone No.9447100049 along with the telephone charges for land phone No.2500049. The respondents have no right to demand charges for different telephones in a same telephone bill. This is unfair and unjust. There is deficiency in service on the part of the respondents on issuing such a bill. Hence the complaint.
2. The counter filed by respondents is that the complainant was provided with post paid mobile connection on his application on the strength of landline connection No.2500049. The complainant in fact has opted for the scheme of linking landline for providing the mobile connection having authorised to adjust any dues of the post paid phone against the deposit available with the landline connection No.2500049. The complainant has defaulted the post-paid connection bearing No.9447100049 and the dues got accumulated to Rs.6212/-. A notice was issued to him on 9.5.05 for making payment of outstanding dues of Rs.6212/- without delay. But he did not turn up. It was proposed to recover the dues through the landline bill having found that the landline deposit of the consumer was insufficient. Under Rule 443 of the Indian Telegraph Rule, 1951 the respondents are at liberty to withdraw any other service provided to the same subscriber for default of payment. As per interim order of the Forum telephone No.2500049 subscribed by the consumer was restored upon remittance of Rs.2158/-. Admittedly an amount of Rs.6212/- was included in the impugned bill to recover against the Mobile No.9447100049 provided to the consumer. In such cases, as a measure to recover the dues of cell one service, such due amount is added to the landline bill as Cell One service was provided under the scheme opted by such applicants. For this genuine reason the arrears of post paid connection amounting to Rs.6212/- was added in the bill of landline connection. Hence there is no deficiency in service and dismiss the complaint.
3. The points for consideration are:
(1)Is there any deficiency in service?
(2)If so, costs and compensation?
4. The evidence consists of Ext. P1 and Ext. R1 and R2.
5. Points: All the points can be considered together. The complaint is filed to get compensation from the respondents for the deficiency in service committed by them. The case of complainant is that he had two telephone connections from the respondents and one is landline and another one is post-paid mobile phone. The respondents issued Ext. P1 bill demanding the charges of both phones. This act of the respondents is challenging by the complainant. According to him, being separate connection the respondents had to issue separate bills and issuance of Ext. P1 bill is illegal. In the counter the respondents stated that the complainant has opted for the scheme of linking landline for providing the mobile connection having authorised to adjust any dues of the post paid phone against the deposit available with the landline. They produced the undertaking given by the complainant and is marked as Ext. R1. According to Ext. R1, there is agreement on the part of complainant to respondents to allow the existing deposit of his landline with consumer No.71122617 adjusted towards outstanding of his Cell One connection. According to the respondents, only because of this assurance they had issued Ext. P1 notice. More over as per Rule 443 of the Indian Telegraph Rule, 1951 the respondents are at liberty to withdraw any other service provided to the same subscriber for default of payment. So the act of the respondents is legal and no illegality is there. The respondents affirmed their version by stating that as a measure to recover the dues of Cell One service, such due amount is added to the landline bill as the Cell One service was provided under the scheme opted by the applicants like complainant. They established their case by producing Ext. R1. They have averred that separate bills were issued to the complainant. But it was not produced and we do not believe it. But they are justified their action by producing Ext. R1 and there is no deficiency in service is seen. The complainant being a lawyer ought to have know about Ext. R1 and denial of payment of bill is a serious default on his part and the respondents have every right to take coercive actions against the complainant against non-payment of the disputed bill amount.
6. In the result, complaint is dismissed.
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