Thane: Advocates Challenge Appointment Of Consumer Forum President Over Lack Of Qualifications

Thane: Advocates Challenge Appointment Of Consumer Forum President Over Lack Of Qualifications

The advocates have addressed a letter to the president of the State Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum complaining about the same. According to the advocates, the presiding officer is a consultant neurosurgeon by profession.

Pranali LotlikarUpdated: Wednesday, May 29, 2024, 02:34 AM IST
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Thane: Advocates Challenge Appointment Of Consumer Forum President Over Lack Of Qualifications | Unsplash

Thane: Advocates practising before the Thane district consumer forum have expressed concern over the appointment of its president, saying she does not possess requisite qualifications as per the rules formed by the government.

The advocates claim that as the president is not qualified for the post, the orders passed by her will be invalid from the beginning (void ab initio), leading to “mockery of justice”. The advocates have addressed a letter to the president of the State Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum complaining about the same. According to the advocates, the presiding officer is a consultant neurosurgeon by profession.

“Richa Sharma [Bansod]’s appointment is in contravention to the consumer protection rules, framed by the government. She is not qualified as a district judge, as required by the rules. We have learnt that she is not even a law graduate,” the letter said.

On Tuesdays, the board is adjourned or is conducted after noon as Sharma attends some hospital, it said. “From social media, it is gathered that she is associated with Neurogenic Brain and Spine Institute at Sanpada and her LinkedIn profile shows that she is also associated as chief operating officer at Ensphere Healthcare Solutions,”the letter reads.

“Members of our association are having various grievances regarding her conduct from the Bench. Also the board is not uploaded on time. Often times, the files are not traceable.” Advocate Anand Patwardhan, ex- president of Consumer Court’s Advocates Association, said there was a lot of discrepancy over the appointment of the judicial members of the forum. “The presiding officers are not even law graduates, which is reflected in their order copy,” he said.

When contacted, Justice SP Tawade, president of the forum, acknowledged receiving the letter. “I have forwarded it to the government authorities, who will decide on the matter,” he said. When The Free Press Journal contacted the presiding officer for her comment, she passed a message through one of the consumers commission’s employee that she has received instructions that she is not allowed to talk to any one.

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