NATIONAL CONSUMER DISPUTES REDRESSAL COMMISSION
(from the order dated 9.2.2005 in Appeal No.A-19/2005
of the State
Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Ltd. Petitioner
A.C. Aggarwal … Respondent
HON’BLE MR.JUSTICE M.B. SHAH, PRESIDENT
MRS. RAJYALAKSHMI RAO, MEMBER
For the Petitioner : Ms. Leena Tuteja, Advocate
For the Respondent : Nemo
Learned counsel for the petitioner has produced on record two circulars dated 30.12.2003 and dated 9.8.2004. The relevant portion of the circulars is as under:-
“It has been decided to implement new tariff plan in respect of Basic services (PSTN) w.e.f. 1.1.2004. The details of the Tariff
Plan are available in the enclosed annexure. The following may kindly be noted for implementation.
(i) There is no change in the existing “MTNL Economy Plan” and “MTNL Economy Plus Plan”. However, they would be
called “Plan-250” and “Plan-280” respectively.
(ii) The existing subscriber of “Super Saver Plan” shall automatically stand transferred to “Plan-2000” w.e.f. 1.1.2004.
(iii) The following “Phone Plus” services would be available free of cost to the subscribers in respect of “Plan-280”, “Plan-500”, “Plan-1500” and “Plan-2000.
(a) Abbreviated Dialing
(b) Call Transfer
(d) Three Party Conferencing
(iv) For switch over to another Plan from the existing one, the subscriber can apply to the Customer Service Centres /Sanchar Haats on a plain paper. The subscriber would be billed in accordance with the new switched over plan as per his option w.e.f. the next billing cycle.
All the in-charges of Customer Service Centres and Sanchar Haats are required to keep sufficient copies of the enclosed annexure containing the Plan details readily available so as to supply them with the application form of New Telephone Connection.
This issues with the approval of the Executive Director,
Sub : Tariff for Senior Citizens
“Kindly refer to this office letter No.TR/comp/Sys Tariff/11/21003 dated 2.8.2003 vide which alternative tariff plan for Sr. Citizens was sent. This tariff was to be implemented w.e.f. 1.8.2003. To avoid confusion over its implementation, the following points are being reiterated again.
(1) Alternative tariff plan for Sr. Citizens effective from 1.8.2003 would also be applicable to pre 1.8.2003 sr. citizens.
(2) As per GM (OP&C) letter No. CO /CS/Tariff/KW dated 30.12.2003 the subscriber would be billed in accordance with the new switched over plan as per his option with effect from the next billing cycle.
(3) The monthly rental of non-OYT sr. citizens category is Rs.187.50
(4) The security of non-OYT Sr. Citizens category is Rs.1125.00
(5) As revised security under this category is Rs.1125.00, any security already deposited in excess of Rs.1125.00 may be refunded to the subs.
(6) Refund of excess charged monthly rental if any may be given through adjustment in the future bills.”
In this case the Complainant approached the District Forum contending that he is entitled to the benefit of 25% rebate in rentals in respect of his telephone from the date of the circular came into being, i.e. 31.7.2003. Admittedly, the Complainant applied for the rebate on 24.6.2004 and the MTNL granted the rebate from August, 2004. The District Forum extended the benefit to the Complainant from July, 2004. His appeal to the State Commission was allowed. The State Commission observed that the benefit granted by any authority has to be provided and availed from the date such a benefit is granted by way of office order or circular or any rule, i.e. in the present case, the date is 31.7.2003. Feeling aggrieved, the MTNL has come in revision before us.
Considering the smallness of the amount involved, we do not think that this would be a fit case for interference at this stage. Hence, the revision petition is dismissed.
With regard to the other cases, the District Forum and the State Commission would decide the matter as per the Circulars.
The aforesaid circulars are required to be widely publicized by the MTNL so as to bring in awareness amongst the senior citizens/consumers that they are entitled to get benefit if they apply to the MTNL. It is the duty of the MTNL to give wide publicity of such beneficial circulars and the same should not remain in their files.
A copy of this order be sent to the Secretary, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Civil Supplies Distribution (Department of Consumer
Affairs) so that they can also publicize the said circular, if thought proper.