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Rsg Share & Stock Brokers Ltd. vs Anju Gupta And Ors. on 18 January, 2002
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22. Reliance of the petitioner on the judgment of the Supreme Court in the case of judgment of the Apex Court in the case of Sky Pack Carriers Ltd. (supra) is of no avail. That was a case dealing with the powers of National Commissioner constituted under Consumers Protection Act, 1986. In an appeal, the National Commission appointed an arbitrator and referred the matter for his adjudication. It was the National commissioner who was supposed to hear the appeal and instead of discharging its statutory duty, it suo moto delegated the same to the arbitrator which the Supreme Court held to be impermissible as there was no provision in the Consumer Protection Act, 1986 permitting the National Commission to adopt such a course. This is what the Supreme Court observed:

"..... The Commissions, under the Act, are quasi-judicial bodies and they are supposed to provide speedy and simple redressal to consumer disputes and for that purpose, they have been empowered to give relief of a specified nature and in an appropriate way, to award compensation. On a detailed scrutiny of the different provisions of the Act and bearing in mind the powers conferred on the Commissions, it is indeed difficult to conceive that such Commissions would be authorised to refer the disputes for a consensual adjudication, merely because to arrive at a decision, it would be necessary to take evidence in the proceedings. In the absence of any provision in the Act itself, authorising the Commission to refer a pending proceeding before it, on receipt of a complaint from a consumer, for being settled through a consensual adjudication, the conclusion is irresistible that the Commissions under the Consumers Protection Act do not have the jurisdiction to refer the dispute for a consensual adjudication and then make the said decision of the so called consensual Arbitrator, an order of the Commission itself."