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Kotak Mahindra Old Mutual Life Insurance Ltd has been ordered to pay Rs 36,800 to a man for not returning the premium amount paid for a policy which he had returned within the 15-day free-look period.

The New Delhi District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum pulled up the insurance firm for “cheating” customer Satish Chandra Tyagi and not returning him the premium amount despite Tyagi having returned the policy as per the stipulation that the same could be returned within free-look period of 15 days, if not liked by customer.

“Opposite party (Kotak Mahindra) has furnished long winding arguments to explain its position. We find its position totally untenable in the face of prima facie case of the complainant and evidence on record.

“Firstly, the policy was void ab-initio being issued in wrong name. Secondly, it was returned within free-look period.

“The money should have been refunded, but opposite party indulged in unfair trade practice, cheating and deficiency of service (by not returning the money). We direct it to refund Rs 11,800 and pay Rs 25,000 as damages for harassment and litigation cost,” said the bench, presided by C K Chaturvedi.

In his complaint, 60-year-old Tyagi had submitted that he and his wife were approached and offered by the insurance firm a suitable policy for them, subsequent to which his wife had purchased the policy in her name on November 20, 2005 after paying Rs 11,808 as first premium.

The policy was not issued in his wife’s name but issued in his name and it was also not a life insurance policy as was agreed upon at the time of payment of premium, he had said.

Tyagi also submitted that he was later issued a new policy, which he returned within 15 days and then had demanded refund of premium of Rs 11,808 but the firm had not returned the amount.

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