Ahmedabad: According to a district consumer commission, an insurance provider must pay the family of the insured person a death benefit of ₹10 lakh.
The insurance refused the amount to a family because they held a BPL card. It stated: “A ration card below the poverty line (BPL) is not conclusive evidence of a person’s income.”
In this case, Birla Sun Life Insurance Co Ltd provided a 10 lakh life insurance policy to Kanubhai Solanki. He was residing in July 2012 in the town of Kapadvanj, Kheda district. In January 2015, a cardiac arrest cost him his life.
The insurance company denied the death claim because Solanki had declared false income, despite the family’s demands for insurance payment. Although he claimed to earn ₹1.80 lakh per year, the company claimed his family had a BPL card. The company said the insured failed to provide the BPL card to conceal information about his earnings.
The family filed a complaint against the insurance with the Consumer Disputes Redress Commission of Ahmedabad (city). He claimed that Solanki never asked for a BPL card. Additionally, the family said the government has already distributed them to everyone in the area. After Solanki acquired the insurance policy, the family claimed to have received a BPL card. The family also argued that a BPL card cannot determine one’s income and that it is not true to say that one will always be poor.
According to the family, Solanki was a wealthy clothing salesman. He claimed the denial of his death request showed a lack of service.
The company pointed out that Solanki was a BPL and obtained the coverage illegally.
The commission concluded Aug. 18 that the income statement is not a material fact to the police issue after hearing the case. At the time of his death, the policy was still in effect after Solanki had paid three premiums. “The BPL ration card cannot be taken as conclusive evidence of the cardholder’s income. Sometimes a BPL card can be obtained by a person disclosing less income than their actual income,” the commission said. He ordered the insurer to pay the death benefit along with an additional 15,000 rupees as compensation for causing mental agony and legal fees.
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