A city consumer forum has ordered a private management school to pay compensation of Rs. 50,000 to a student.

According to the complaint filed, Saurabh Bhatia of New Delhi had been admitted to the Great Lakes Institute of Management, Saidapet, in the PGPM course and paid Rs. 5.12 lakh towards fees for 2007-2008. Being in a new place, he faced many difficulties in Chennai and could not cope with the change in climate and food.

After opting to join another institution in Gurgaon, he had sent many e-mails requesting the institute in Chennai to refund the fee for the period he had not attended classes, but the institute had not refunded the amount.

The private institute stated that he had joined the institution on March 23, 2007, and attended classes up to March 30. Later, he abruptly discontinued the course, thereby rendering waste the seat allotted to him. It said the complainant was not entitled to a refund.

The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum, Chennai (south), comprising its president V. Gopal and its member L. Deenadayalan said,

“Non-refund of the fees for the period for which he had not attended the course amounts to unfair trade practice and deficiency in service.”

The district forum directed the institute to refund one-third of the amount which the complainant had paid as fees. It also directed it to pay Rs. 50,000 towards mental agony caused to Saurabh and Rs. 5,000 towards the cost within six weeks.

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