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Hyderabad Woman Awarded Rs 20,000 Compensation for Cancelled IRCTC Train Tickets

Hyderabad Woman Awarded Rs 20,000 Compensation for Cancelled IRCTC Train Tickets

In a recent development, a Hyderabad woman, Khursheed Begum, has been awarded Rs 20,000 in compensation by the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission–II. This ruling comes after Khursheed filed a complaint against the India Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) for cancelling her confirmed tickets at the eleventh hour during the festival season rush.

The Incident

Khursheed Begum’s ordeal began when she booked four tickets through an app for the Howrah Special Train from Secunderabad to Vizianagaram on January 13, 2021. Despite paying Rs 6,470 for 2AC and receiving confirmation via email, she received an automated call on the day of the journey, notifying her of the cancellation of her booked tickets while she was waiting at the platform, just an hour before the scheduled departure. No reason was provided for the cancellation, and Khursheed’s attempts to reach the customer care centre went unanswered.

The Consequences

The cancellation of tickets left Khursheed and her family stranded at the railway station during the festival season rush. With her travel plans during Sankranti, Khursheed faced difficulty finding alternative transportation. Eventually, her family managed to secure tickets for an ordinary bus to Vizianagaram, incurring an additional expense of Rs 4,589.

Legal Action and Ruling

Khursheed filed a complaint with the consumer forum, arguing that cancelling tickets an hour before departure without a valid reason amounted to deficiency of service and unfair trade practice. Despite being served notice, IRCTC did not appear before the forum, resulting in the case being considered ex parte. During the trial, the commission confirmed that the tickets were indeed cancelled while Khursheed was waiting on the platform at the Secunderabad railway station.

The bench emphasized the absence of valid reasons provided by IRCTC for the abrupt cancellation and the deduction of Rs 470 while refunding the fare. Consequently, the commission deemed it fair and reasonable to order significant compensation for the inconvenience and hardship experienced by Khursheed and her family, in addition to refunding the deducted amount.

Khursheed Begum, a resident of Hyderabad, secured compensation amounting to Rs 20,000 from the India Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC). This ruling came in response to her complaint filed with the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission–II in Hyderabad regarding the cancellation of confirmed tickets at the eleventh hour during the festival season rush.

Booking Troubles and Last-Minute Cancellation

Khursheed Begum recounted her ordeal of booking four tickets through an app for the Howrah Special Train from Secunderabad to Vizianagaram on January 13, 2021. Despite paying Rs 6,470 for 2AC and receiving confirmation via email, she faced a sudden setback when an automated call notified her of the cancellation of her booked tickets while she was waiting at the platform, just an hour before the scheduled departure. This abrupt cancellation left her stranded without a valid reason provided by IRCTC.

Unforeseen Expenses and Travel Hassles

With her travel plans disrupted during Sankranti, Khursheed struggled to find alternative transportation. Ultimately, her family had to resort to securing tickets for an ordinary bus to Vizianagaram, incurring an additional expense of Rs 4,589 due to IRCTC’s cancellation.

Legal Battle and Consumer Advocacy

Taking her grievances to the consumer forum, Khursheed argued that such last-minute cancellations without valid reasons amounted to deficiency of service and unfair trade practice. Despite being served notice, IRCTC failed to appear before the forum, leading to the case being considered ex parte.

Judicial Verdict and Compensation

During the trial, the commission confirmed the cancellation of tickets while Khursheed was awaiting departure at the Secunderabad railway station. Emphasizing the absence of valid reasons provided by IRCTC for the sudden cancellation and the subsequent deduction of Rs 470 during the fare refund process, the bench ruled in favor of Khursheed. The commission deemed it fair and reasonable to order significant compensation for the inconvenience and hardship endured by Khursheed and her family, in addition to refunding the deducted amount.

Conclusion

This ruling highlights the significance of consumer advocacy and the accountability of service providers in ensuring a seamless travel experience for passengers. Khursheed Begum’s successful pursuit of compensation sets a precedent for addressing grievances related to last-minute cancellations and underscores the importance of fair and transparent practices in the railway industry.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: What compensation did Khursheed Begum receive from IRCTC?

A: Khursheed Begum received Rs 20,000 in compensation from IRCTC after the last-minute cancellation of her confirmed tickets.

Q: Why did Khursheed Begum file a complaint against IRCTC?

A: Khursheed Begum filed a complaint against IRCTC for cancelling her confirmed tickets just an hour before departure without providing a valid reason.

Q: What were the consequences of the ticket cancellation for Khursheed Begum?

A: The cancellation of tickets left Khursheed and her family stranded at the railway station during the festival season rush, forcing them to incur additional expenses to secure alternative transportation.

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