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Report by Shweta Sabuji

The appeal in the case of ITC LIMITED Vs. AASHNA ROY was made under Section 23 of the Consumer Protection Act of 1986. It questions the validity of the decision made by the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission in Consumer Complaint No.1619/18 between Aashna Roy and Yogesh Deveshwar and another in which the consumer’s rights were communicated.


On April 12, 2018, the respondent went to the ITC Maurya Hotel’s saloon for hair styling so that she would look presentable and well-groomed when she appeared before the interview panel a week later. She asked for Ms Alem, the hairdresser who had previously cut her hair on several occasions when she had visited the saloon. Since Ms Alem was unavailable, the respondent’s hair was styled by Ms Christine, a different hairstylist. The respondent, who had previously expressed dissatisfaction with Ms Christine’s services, agreed to hire her after the saloon’s manager assured her that Ms Christine had significantly improved her performance over some time.

The reply specifically instructed the mentioned hair stylist to “length flicks/layers covering her face in the front and at the back and 4-inch straight hair trim from the bottom,” using those exact words. The respondent was told to keep her head down since she was wearing high-powered glasses, which were taken off for the hairstyling process, and she was unable to view herself in the mirror to see what the hairdresser was doing. The respondent claimed that the directions were straightforward and would not require much time, but when the hair stylist spent more than an hour styling the subject’s hair, the respondent questioned why.

The hairstylist responded by telling her that she was giving her “the London Haircut.” When the hair styling was finished, she was shocked to see that the hair stylist, Ms Christine, had completely chopped off her hair, leaving only 4 inches from the top and barely brushing her shoulders, which was quite the opposite of what she had requested. She voiced her complaint to Mr Gurpreet Acharya, the saloon manager, right away. The Manager did not present a bill because she had complained, so she did. She was, however, so irritated and angry that she left the saloon.

Later, the saloon offered the respondent services for free treatment and hair extensions for the interview, and it appears that she accepted both offers. To extend its offerings, the salon hired an outside technical hair specialist from MoeHair (an international brand). She was instructed to repeat the procedure two to three more times. On March 5, 2018, the respondent underwent hair treatment once more. She was told that Ms Alem would supervise Mr Vicky, the on-staff hairdresser, as he performed the procedure. The respondent was informed that Mr Vicky was a highly skilled hair stylist with training. It ends up being a disaster for the respondent once more. Her hair and scalp were severely damaged during the treatment because too much ammonia was utilized, which caused intense scalp burning and irritation.


The appellant, who was positioned as Opposite Party No. 2 before the NCDRC, raised several issues in separate written objections, including doubting the respondent’s status as a consumer given the free services provided; the compensation claim was extremely excessive; no documentary evidence had been presented to support such a large claim; and the complaint should be dismissed for lack of pecuniary jurisdiction. The appellant presented its argument even on the merits. The respondent also submitted a response affidavit to the NCDRC. Affidavits were used to present the evidence by both parties. Additional photos, CCTV footage, social media talks, and other materials were also included in the package.


The NCDRC determined that the respondent’s hair had been cut shorter than she had requested. Additionally, it noted a conclusion that the respondent’s appearance may have changed as a result of poor hair styling. The NCDRC further determined that the appellant had been careless in how it treated the respondent’s hair and had also damaged the respondent’s scalp. After then, the NCDRC handled the quantification of the compensation.


In the aforementioned ruling, the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission accepted the solitary respondent’s complaint and ordered the present appellant, who is Opposite Party No. 2, to pay compensation in the amount of Rs. 2 crores to the NCDRC.


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