CA – DEC 14 – CERS SETTLES IN COURT
- Posted by CERC India
- Posted in Uncategorized
CERS SETTLES IN COURT
Postal authorities pulled up for denying senior citizen interest
Mahadev C. Patel from Ahmedabad retired from a school on 31 May 2006. After receiving his retirement benefits, amounting to Rs. 5.47 lakh, he decided to open an account with a post office under the Senior Citizenâ€™s Saving Scheme – 2004. He invested Rs. 5 lakh under the scheme for a period of five years on 31 October 2006. The account was opened after verification of documents. Interest was paid at 9% quarterly for five years amounting to Rs. 2.209 lakh.
However, at the time of maturity, the postal authorities arbitrarily deducted the interest from the principal. To his shock and disbelief, Patel was given a cheque for just 2.791 lakh. He accepted the cheque under protest and immediately lodged a complaint. The postal authorities responded that they were treating his account as irregular as he had not invested his retirement benefits within one month of receiving them.
Patel approached CERS for help. It wrote to the postal authorities but not receiving a positive response sent a legal notice. It contended that the post office had erred by allowing the account to be opened without noticing that many months had passed from the retirement date. Eventually, a case was filed before the District Forum.
In its order dated 27 May 2014, the Forum asked the postal authorities to pay Patel interest at 6% on Rs. 5 lakh from 3 November 2006 to 2 November 2011. In addition, they would have to pay interest at 6% on Rs. 2.209 lakh from 2 November 2011 till realisation. In case they did not comply with the order within three months, they would have to pay interest at 9% on the entire amount. The Forum also awarded compensation of Rs. 3,000 for mental agony and harassment and Rs. 2,000 towards costs.