HPCL to pay Rs 50,000 for explosion due to gas leakage

New Delhi Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Ltd (HPCL) and one of its distributors have been directed to pay Rs 50,000 as compensation to a customer for damage caused to his home due to an explosion triggered by LPG leakage.

The South West District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum held the state-run enterprise and its distributor jointly or severally liable to pay the amount to the complainant for the financial loss and harassment suffered by him.

"We are of the opinion that the explosion took place due to gas leakage, that leaked due to the defective pipe and regulator. We hold the opposite parties (HPCL and its distributor) responsible for deficiency in service on their part which caused financial loss and harassment to complainant for which he is entitled to be reasonably compensated," a bench presided by Narendra Kumar said.

The forum directed HPCL and its distributor to jointly and severally pay Rs 50,000 as compensation to Delhi resident Dinesh Kumar.

In his complaint, Dinesh had alleged that on June 15, 2004 there was gas leakage from the LPG cylinder he had bought from HPCL and on informing the distributor it had sent one of its employees to rectify the leak.

The distributor's employee instead of replacing the old gas pipe, from which gas was leaking, had cut out its torn ends and attached it again to the cylinder, he had alleged.

Three-days after the repair, gas had again leaked out at night and there was an explosion in the kitchen, he had said. In its defence, HPCL and its distributor had denied the allegations and had contended the gas leakage was due to lapse on the part of consumer.

The forum rejected their contentions, saying "there is sufficient evidence to prove that the cause of leakage of the gas was due to old and outdated pipe and also defective regulator" which were supplied by HPCL to its distributor who passed it on to the customers.

Story First Published: July 16, 2013 13:26 IST

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