SBI directed to pay ₹1 lakh to customer

‘Complainant was made to suffer due to delay in returning property papers’

A retired government servant was awarded ₹1 lakh compensation after State Bank of India misplaced documents of his property mortgaged to pay off a loan.

The Telangana State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission was dealing with a complaint filed by A. Manohar (60), who stated that he obtained ₹10 lakh loan from the bank. He then paid an amount of ₹8.52 lakh by mortgaging his property in S.R. Nagar. Due to financial issues, the complainant defaulted on the EMIs. Soon the bank declared the loan as an NPA and sought to restructure the loan by means of SARFAESI Act. The complainant then approached the Debt Recovery Tribunal, got a stay, and later reached a full and final settlement agreement amount.

Mr. Manohar said that despite settling the loan amount, the original property title deeds were not returned. He made several representations in 2014 to the bank seeking their return, but bank representatives told him since the documents were taken in 2003, they were not traceable.

However, in 2016, after Mr. Manohar approached the Commission, the bank informed him that the documents were found.

On its part, the bank stated soon after the documents were traced, it made efforts to deliver them to the complainant. However, they remained unavailable. In a letter dated January 21, 2016, the bank requested the complainant to take back the documents, which he acknowledged. The bank clarified not returning the papers on time was unintentional.

In its judgment, the Commission stated that there was a delay of returning the documents for one-and-a-half years. “However, during this period of one and a half years, the complainant was made to suffer for the title deeds whereby he had to approach the banking ombudsman and other authorities,” the Commission said.

The Commission also ordered SBI to pay costs of ₹5,000.

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Printable version | Jun 3, 2020 6:10:04 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/sbi-directed-to-pay-1-lakh-to-customer/article26750814.ece

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