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Sec 17 showroom fined 17,000 for charging extra VAT
March, 04th 2016

Taking serious note of the practice of traders charging value added tax (VAT) on price which is inclusive of all taxes because of discount offers, the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum asked an Adidas showroom in Sector 17 to refund Rs 449.93 and pay Rs 17,000 to a consumer.

Anu Pratap, a resident of Sector 16, Chandigarh in her complaint before Consumer Forum said she bought a pair of shoes from the showroom under a promotional offer of 40% off.

"Maximum retail price of the said shoes was Rs 5,999 which was inclusive of all taxes," the complaint read. She alleged that after giving 40% discount, the opposite parties charged Rs 4,049 from her and charged Rs 449.93 as VAT on Rs 5,999, which was already inclusive of all taxes.

Pratap served a legal notice on showroom authorities seeking refund of the excess amount charged. But instead of refunding the amount, they sent a "vague and evasive reply" justifying their action of charging VAT.

The complainant described the aforesaid act and conduct as deficiency in service and unfair trade practice. Despite a notice, no one appeared on behalf of the showroom and the case was proceeded ex-parte.

"This act of the showroom managers draws an adverse inference against them," the forum stated. Their non-appearance shows they have nothing to say in their defence against the allegations made by the complainant. Therefore, assertions of the complainant go unrebutted and uncontroverted, the forum held.

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