The state consumer disputes redressal commission has ordered two Indian Railways officials to pay Rs 8,000 to a consumer who missed his connecting train to Chandigarh from New Delhi.
According to Nazim Ahamed, a resident of Sector 25, he was travelling by the Bhagalpur-New Delhi (Anand Vihar) Garib Rath Express on May 13, 2014, when it reached the station eight hours late. Due to this, he missed his train (Kerala Sampark Kranti Express) to Chandigarh, following which he requested the Station Master of the New Delhi station to connect his ticket with some other train for reaching his destination.
However, his request was refused on the grounds that it was not permissible under law, and he had to purchase a new ticket. Following this, he filed a case with the consumer court.
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In their joint reply, the Station Master of the New Delhi Railway Station and the General Manager, Ministry of Railway, stated that the cause of action, if any, arose in New Delhi where the complainant had missed his train.
Further, the journey of the complainant was from Bhagalpur station to Anand Vihar station, which is more than 15 km from New Delhi station from where he had to take the train to Chandigarh.
Since there was no booking of direct connectivity in the trains, no loss, including mental harassment, could be attributed to the Railways.
On the day of the hearing, the commission presided by Justice Sham Sunder noted that, “the tickets were booked from Chandigarh and therefore, this case is within the territorial jurisdiction of this commission. Also, from the evidence presented before the court, the train was late by eight hours due to which the complainant could not catch the next train.
However, the complainant had already paid the amount in advance for the tickets and was not able to catch the train for Chandigarh due to no fault of his own, Despite this, the opposite parties did not cooperate with him and he had to buy a new ticket. This conduct of the opposite parties amounts to unfair trade practice”.
In an order dated January 27, the UT district consumer disputes redressal forum had ordered the respondents to pay Rs 5,000 for causing harassment as well as Rs 3,000 towards litigation costs within a period of 30 days at an interest rate of 9 per cent.
Following this, the respondents had filed an appeal in the commission, which was dismissed by the commission bench in this hearing and the decision was upheld.