The state consumer commission in an order has upheld the BEST's decision of transferring electric meter in a person's name based certificate issued by society, which stated that the shop was in brother's name and he was occupier of larger space.
With the order, the state commission also dismissed the complaint based on which district consumer commission had faulted the BEST's conduct and restored the transfer of electric meter to the appellant.
Byculla Resident's Appeal
The order dated September 27 was passed by S P Tavade, president and A Z Khwaja, judicial member, State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (SCDRC). It was passed on an appeal by Byculla resident Rajendra Baburao Metkari against M/s Karan Embroidery, through its proprietor Gajanan Govind Vekhande, M/s Brihanmumbai Electric Supply & Transport Undertaking (BEST) and Assistant Administrative Manager, Customer Care, G/South Division, Wadala.
Metkari challenged the district consumer commission order in which a complaint filed by M/s Karan Embroidery (Vekhande) came to be allowed and M/s BEST and its assistant administrative manager were directed to restore electricity connection in favour of Vekhande.
Background of the electric meter transfer
Vekhande was running a business in the portion of Shop no. 40. In 2018, BEST and its administrative manager transferred the meter in the name of Metkari after doing spot inspection. Vekhande filed a consumer complaint after his grievance with the BEST over transfer of meter was not addressed. In his complaint he stated that the meter was transferred without giving due notice to him and in the absence of necessary documents, which led to him suffering irreparable loss.
Metkari on the other hand stated that one Bholanath Metkari, his brother, was the original owner of shop number 40 who allowed one Krishna Chavan to use and occupy it. Chavan in turn gave a small portion to Vekhande. Chavan's son filed a complaint against Metkari which was dismissed.
District Commission's Verdict
Vekhande had relied upon the bill being on his name and that he had license under Bombay Shops and Establishment Act. The district consumer commission came to a decision that shop no. 40 belonged to Vekhande and he was using the electricity from 2000 to 2018. Besides directing the electricity supply to be restored to Vekhande, it gave compensation of Rs 5,000 to Vekhande.
Metkari filed an appeal challenging this order. He even placed on record one copy of certificate issued by Shivaji Nagar Co-operative Housing Society Ltd. to show that Shop No.40 was earlier standing in the name of his brother and that he held onto 260 sq ft. of the total 300 sq ft. area. Relying on the written version of the BEST, the state commission stated that transfer of electric meter in the name of Metkari did not amount to unfair trade practice and deficiency in service.