Consumer panel asks immigration firm to refund Rs 9.14L, pay Rs10K fine

Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, May 3

The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission in its recent order directed Avalon Immigration Private Ltd, a private immigration agency, to pay Rs 9,13,800 to a Hoshiarpur-based couple for duping them on the pretext of sending them to Canada.

The complainant, Shakti Kumar and his wife Rajvir Kaur, both residents of Rampur Bilron village in Hoshiarpur said that the regional and Chandigarh-based officials of the immigration firm had done fraud with them.

The officials of the company approached the complainants, who were interested to go abroad at their resident and convinced them that they have relations in the Canadian embassy and could help them to obtain visa sponsorship and PR for Canada. For which they would be charging Rs 19,20,000 to be paid in four instalments of Rs 4,80,000 each.

The company officials also asked the complainants to pay the first instalment at their Chandigarh-based office, while signing the agreement and second instalment would paid at the time of arrival of settlement and third instalment would be paid on the arrival of the nomination and fourth instalment would be paid at time of medical by the High Commission of Canada. Following which, the complainant paid the first installment via demand draft on September 9, 2013 and second on January 13, 2014, on the assurance that their visa would arrive within one month.

However, the complainant realised that the company was doing nothing to get their visa. Meanwhile, he got to know that the company has already done a fraud of nearly Rs 7 lakh with a Jalandhar-based resident, hence after waiting for months he demanded his money from the immigration company. But despite several attempts he couldn’t receive his money and filed a case against the company at the consumer court. However, the company officials failed to appear before the court and later on April 17, 2018, they filed a reply and contested the complaint.

After hearing arguments of both the parties, the president of the Commission, Kuljit Singh and member Jyotsna, concluded that the company did assure the complainant that he would get the visa after paying two instalments, however, the company owners committed default in arranging visa for the complainant.

Therefore they cannot retain the amount paid by Shakti. Therefore, the company owners were directed to refund Rs 9,03,800 to the complainant with five percent interest per annum from the date of filing of the complaint, Rs10,000 as compensation for mental agony and harassment and for financial loss including cost of litigation and to deposit Rs 5,000 in the Legal Aid Fund of this commission.

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