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Chandigarh Restaurant asked to pay Rs.12,000 to customer for charging Rs.312 for two bottles of water

  • A fine night. Great company and a perfect ambience. Jagvir Singh Kang of Ludhiana, did not expect the night to go any better. But the happiness and joy of being together with friends and family turned into anger and frustration when, after purchasing 2 bottles of water before leaving the place, the manager billed him Rs.312 for just that purchase.

    The victim had already traveled 70 kms and it was close to midnight. Therefore he was compelled to pay the full amount but did not forget to ask for the bill. The victim also confronted the restaurant manager about the exaggerated bill . But the manager replied that the bill was as per the pricing policy and that the bill included Rs 16.50 as VAT, Rs 12 as service charge and Rs 7.39 as service tax. The maximum retail price of both the water bottles being Rs.60, was sold by the restaurant at Rs.156.

    The restaurant in question, Brooklyn Central in Chandigarh, was charged with a case in the consumer court by Jagvir after almost a year. When asked by the consumer court to prove that the bill was not an exaggerated one, the restaurant replied that the taxes were levied on the victim because he had consumed the bottles of water inside the restaurant premises. The court then asked the manager to provide video footage or CCTV recordings to prove his claim.

    When the restaurant failed to provide any such evidence, the consumer court passed its verdict and slapped a fine of Rs.12,000 to be paid as compensation to the victim. This compensation also included Rs.5000 as cost of litigation for Jagvir on account of deficiency of services. The forum has further asked the restaurant owners to deposit Rs 15,000 in consumer legal aid account. The forum condemned the act of the restaurant, calling it “high handedness” to which the victim fell prey.

    OUR TAKE

    The restaurant was very wrong to charge the victim so exorbitantly. In greed of a few extra bucks, the restaurant had to dish out an extra few thousand dollar bills. The case and the fine both might have hit the restaurant out of nowhere since there was a long gap of a year between the time the bill was issued and when the case was registered. The important point, we as consumers should notice from this incident is that even though faced with the exorbitant bill, the victim – Mr.Jagvir did not forget to take the bill from the service provider as proof of their “high handedness”. Consumers around the country should be made aware of their rights and incidents such as these would reduce drastically.

     


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