Farmer wins insurance claim against Oriental

Company has to pay a fine of Rs 28,380 with interest of 9% per annum.

Hyderabad: Erigi Ramulu, a farmer from Nalgonda, managed the difficult feat of getting the Oriental Insurance company to fork out the insured amount of Rs 40,000 for a dead buffalo after he took the matter to the Consumer Forum.

The complainant claimed that he had insured his buffalo through Andhra Pradesh Grameena Vikas Bank on January 30, 2012 by paying a sum of Rs 3,193.

After receiving the amount, Oriental Insurance Company Limited issued the insurance policy that was valid till January 2015 and tagged the buffalo with the tag number 17209. The buffalo died in May 2014 and a post-mortem examination conducted at a veterinary hospital in Chandur concluded that the cause of death was haemorrhage of the heart and lungs.

Though the farmer put in his claim with all relevant documents on July 18, 2016, the insurance company claimed in its reply dated as late as October 22, that ‘the death of the animal was not intimated in time and that the ear tag of the buffalo with his number was not surrendered within two weeks of death and thereby the claim is deemed to be repudiated.’

The Forum observed that the complainant had sent the tag after receiving the letter in October and the insurance company was making an excuse when it stated that the tag was a brand new one and appeared to not have been tagged on the animal.

Farmers who raise buffaloes clean their animals and oil them on a daily basis for the good health of the animal, and that is probably why the tag was clean and shiny, the Forum observed. Since the insurance company could not prove its argument that the complainant had submitted his insurance claim too late, the Forum ruled in favour of the complainant.

The Forum ordered Oriental Insurance to pay Rs 28,380 with interest of nine per cent per annum from 2014 and Rs 3,000 towards mental agony caused to the complaint and costs of Rs 2,000.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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