Zomato has been fined with Rs 55,000 along with a hotel for delivering non-vegetarian food not just once, but twice to a lawyer who had ordered a vegetarian dish. The order was passed by the consumer court after a city based lawyer, Shanmukh Deshmukh, complained against the food delivery platform for wrongly delivering non-vegetarian food instead of the vegetarian dish he had ordered.
The Additional District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum in Pune has asked Zomato and the hotel to pay Rs 55,000 compensation to the lawyer. The court has given a 45 day deadline to Zomato and to Hotel Preet Punjabi Swad to pay the amount within 45 days or with 10% interest subsequently, as per the reports of Times of India.
According to Times of India, Deshmukh had ordered paneer butter masala but was wrongly delivered butter chicken on 31 May. He used to fast on Thursdays, as he believed in Gajanan Maharaj. To break the fast he ordered a paneer dish but instead was delivered a chicken dish. He added that since the curries of both the dishes look similar, he could not differentiate and ate the food. Later, he connected with the delivery partner and the hotel and was ensured that the parcel will be changed and paneer will be delivered. However, he was again delivered the chicken dish
A formal complaint was filed by the lawyer after getting no response to the legal notices sent to Zomato and the Hotel. The lawyer demanded Rs 5 lakh and Rs 1 lakh for harassment and also presented the recordings of his conversation with the parties as evidence. Zomato replied to the forum saying that the complaint was wrong. It said that Zomato is just a delivery platform and they do not open the pack to check if the order is correct. Furthermore, the amount of the order was refunded to the consumer. The hotel, however, did accept its mistake, as per the Time of India.
There was a formal agreement between the respondents, which is why the court found both Zomato and the hotel guilty and charged Rs 55,000 as compensation. Of the total fine, the Hotel has been asked to pay Rs 50,000 for faulty services and Rs 5,000 for mental harassment.
Edited by Ishita Gupta