Charge for delay

Last Updated: Sun, Nov 28, 2010 20:01 hrs

The SC has quashed a rule under which the Director of Town Planning of Haryana prohibited charging of "extension fee" from those who got plots but failed to build according to the schedule. The court allowed the appeals of DLF Universal Ltd and Ansal Properties & Industries which had challenged the rule in the Punjab and Haryana HC. The HC had upheld the power of the director to impose such a fee.

No regularisation
The SC has set aside the judgement of the Madras HC in which the HC directed the government to regularise daily wage workers who were employed in musical shows by the air force station for over three decades. The HC found it was unfair to continue them as daily wagers for so long.

Relief for Xerox
The SC last week set aside the ruling of the customs tribunal and granted duty relief for Xerox India. The customs had demanded a higher rate of duty for its import of duplicating and printing machines.

The court stated that the multi-functional machines involved in this case should come under tariff heading 84.71.60. In a consumer dispute over the quality of a Fiat Siena Weekender diesel vehicle, the Supreme Court last week directed an independent technical expert to study the defects. If there are inherent manufacturing defects in the vehicle, the buyer would be entitled to refund the price of the vehicle and the lifetime tax and EMI instalment along with 12 per cent interest. The buyer, C A Anantharam, complained that the engine produced unusually high noise and demanded replacement of the vehicle. The company changed the engine, but it did not satisfy the buyer. The National Commission felt that the defects if any could be removed without replacing the whole vehicle. On appeal, the Supreme Court found a via media.

Kwality Ice Cream Company and Brooke Bond Lipton India Limited (BBLIL) which later merged with Hindustan Lever Limited (HLL) are not to be treated as ‘related persons’ for computing excise duty on the value of Kwality ice cream, the Supreme Court held last week, dismissing the appeal of the Excise Commissioner of Chandigarh. When the authorities issued show cause notices to Kwality, its argument was that the entire transaction between the parties covered by the agreement between them was on principal to principal basis and that price was the sole consideration for the sale of the goods. The tribunal accepted it. The excise authorities appealed to the Supreme Court. It dismissed the appeal stating that Kwality Ice Cream and BBLIL are not Rs related persons'. Accepting the arguments of Kwality, the court stated that the assessable value cannot be computed on the basis of the price at which BBLIL sold the product from its depot.

While computing financial loss due to death in a road accident, not only the monthly salary, but also the daily allowance should be taken into account, the Supreme Court declared while rejecting the objection of the insurance company in the appeal case, Mohd Ameeruddin vs United India Insurance Ltd. The father of the youth who died in the accident moved the tribunal for compensation. The tribunal considered the daily allowance of the deceased youth for computing compensation. But the Andhra Pradesh high court, on the appeal of the insurance company, reduced the compensation amount by deducting the daily allowance. The father appealed to the Supreme Court. It stated that the allowance also should be added to the income for calculating the loss of support for the parents.

The National Consumer Commission has dismissed the appeal of National Insurance Company challenging the state commission’s award in favour of Raja poultry farm which lost vast number of poultry in a cyclone in Andhra Pradesh. The insurance company argued that the state commission had interfered with the findings of its surveyor who is an expert and his conclusions were substituted by that of the commission. The National Commission, however, upheld the award of the state commission.

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