• Denied boarding by AI

On 26th of Feb Air India denied me boarding on a confirmed ticket on a flight to Paris, CDG from IGI. I was given the excuse that I didn't do a web check in but the actual fact was that flight was overbooked. I told that I have a confirmed ticket with a seat number and was well ahead of time at the airport for check in but still I was not allowed to board. Surprisingly, my colleague who was travelling with me for the same trip, he was allowed to board. 

 Since it was a business trip and travelling was necessary I requested an alternative flight for the same day but no same day flights options were availed to me, the travel agent of my company could see those alternative options at his end but somehow AI staff couldn't. For five hours I ran from pillar to post but no one showed any interested in resolving my issue lest even offer a glass of water or a seat out of courtesy.

After running out of options and tired to exhaustion, I took the ticket for next day as it was the only option left open. AI staff promised a 5 star suit as a relief for my troubles that day but as it turned out it was some third grade hotel in mahipalpur. Anyhow, at the hotel I checked with my employer if I should make the trip on 27th as they were the sponsors of my trip and I was told not to go ahead with the trip as I missed the crucial meeting. I lost an important opportunity to not only further my career and get a promotion by helping my employer with the client project but also lost an important skill enhancing opportunity. It was huge embarrassment too in front of other travelers, colleagues and family. 

 Anguished, I filled a case at consumer forum and later in consumer court because AI was offering me a compensation of 20000 as per dgca guidelines, I thought it was too less for my pain and suffering at the hand of AI. I went to the consumer court and the case is currently in mediation. 

 I asked for a comp. of 10 Lakh but AI is not offering above 25000. I may go lower but I want to know how strong is my case. should I pursue it in court. How much time it may take to get a decision. Thanks for your time & guidance.
Asked 4 years ago in Civil Law

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13 Answers

You have good case on merits

2) you had confirmed ticket should have been allowed to board the flight

3) web check in is not mandatory

4) as far as claim fir compensation is concerned you may not get Rs 10 lakhs

5) you have to prove loss suffered by you

Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
87947 Answers
6207 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1. It completely depends on you whether you want to proceed with the matter or have it settled amicably

2. It is quite difficult to predict how long the matter will go. Also there is no pressing urgency too which would entitle you to make an application to the court for expediting the matter

3. you have to act very tactfully with AI in order to extract the maximum compensation from them

4. if you threaten them to continue with the court case, then they might give in to your demand and raise the compensation amount that they are offering to you

5. your case on the reading of the query is quite good. The fact that AI offered you to stay in a hotel, points to the fact that there was deficiency in their service and they were trying to make amends

6. if you decide to continue with the matter, then you will have to bear the advocate per appearance charges and also other expenses. I am sure you must have asked for costs of the complaint as well. But it is on the discretion of the court to award costs to the complainant alongwith the compensation claimed

7. so i suggest in the mediation proceedings, you double the offer which AI has given you to finally close and withdraw the case. Demand 50k and buy peace of mind. Because you never know in which direction the court matter will swing.

Yusuf Rampurawala
Advocate, Mumbai
6882 Answers
79 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

You've got a good Prima Facie case against the airline company as their act amounts to gross deficiency in service and unfair trade practices adopted by them as web check in in not mandatory and you had a confirmed ticket. You'll have to prove to the court that the said act for solely done as the flight was overbooked and they had to excuse for that. So, they made a concorted story to deny your right to board the flight for which you had a valid ticket.

You'll also have to prove that you had suffered grave losses because of the same and this is where case lawcome to the rescue wherein you can cite cases having similar bearing as yours.

Lastly, you one can guarantee you the time slot.

Regards.

Siddharth Jain
Advocate, New Delhi
5930 Answers
101 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Sir, according the facts narrated by you if they are supported by some evidence to corroborate the facts you have good case on merits.

And you can get a good amount of compensation from AI for the deficiency in services and for mental harassment suffered by you. See from previous such case it can be made out that court will likely give compensation around 1 lakh to 2 lakh in exceptional condition when damage is shown to court in monetary terms then it can enhance the amount otherwise in previous such case compensation range from 50 thousand to 2 lakh,

So in you case it would be better if you press Air India in mediation to pay an amount around 1.5 to 2 lakh and settle the dispute as the court proceedings can take time and you have to invest a good amount for lawyer to contest the case. So its better if settle issue by paying you a good amount.

Donot settle for amount like 20 thousand or 25 thousand then you should contest case and should demand actual losses. Though consumer court there is no unnecessary delay but then also it can take like 2 years or more to settle the complaint.

Shubham Jhajharia
Advocate, Ahmedabad
25516 Answers
179 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Firslty, yes your case has full validity as it is the violation of your fundamental right to freely move any where you are required to, and they have stopped you for no reason but for a stupid one.

Secondly, you please stick to your consumer case at the lower level with the same compensation.

Thirdly, in the mean while, I advice you to file a Writ of Mandamus in the form of PIL in the Hon’ble High Court of Delhi for seeking directions for the AI with regard to the prior information or reason should be given before not allowing anyone, and also enhancement in the amount of compensation.

Fourthly, it would come out for sure with some good news.

And then you can use the same to increase your compensation.

Sanjay Baniwal
Advocate, South Delhi
5464 Answers
13 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

1) Here you case is with traveling from one destination to another destination and the AI is ready to pay with compensation against that what you had missed.

2) Court won't compare your career with missed travelling for meeting. Because now days if meeting are held on time from one location to another location in the way of video calling, Skype etc so how your career or promotion has got hampered due to this missed plane.

3) You can ask compensation for double charge and one free return trip to paris and hence forth none of your ticket should cancelled on any reason ground for any destination in the world.

Ganesh Kadam
Advocate, Pune
12338 Answers
191 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

Pursue in the consumer forum and ensure these guys are fined. You can also file a writ petition for infringement of your legal right to fly. Do pursue your case in the Delhi Jurisdiction (am assuming that access was denied at the Delhi Airport)

V Ranjan
Advocate, Delhi
62 Answers

5.0 on 5.0

Hi

I would advise you to go ahead with the case as 25000 is nothing in front of the pain you faced also the loss which happened to you by hampering your various future aspects.

Your complaint is strong and will get you paid much higher than the amount they are offering or the amount you are expecting.

Go ahead with the proceedings.

Thank You

Rahul Jatain
Advocate, Rohtak
5365 Answers
4 Consultations

4.8 on 5.0

Hello,

You do have a strong case.

Do not settle for less, if they do not compensate with the case well then pursue the case.

Also, file a criminal case against them.

Regards

Anilesh Tewari
Advocate, New Delhi
17940 Answers
377 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

Dear Concern,

Please take note -

1. You have a good case with yourself provided you have all the documents readily available with yourself to prove the fault of the Air India.

2. Air India on its own will not offer you a handsome amount for the wrong done by them and will give you the reason for that they are following DGCA guidelines. So it is better for you to not to agree with the mediation outcome and to contest the case the way you are already doing it.

Pulkit Prakash
Advocate, Delhi
309 Answers
7 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

This is my response to you:

1. The money that is being offered to you is less, you could definitely go higher;

2. This is less relevant to your case, but still be useful, wherein the consumer got compensation to the tune of Rs.2,00,000/- with interest added thereon in the case of Sri Banibrata Poddar vs Air India Ltd. on 23 February, 2018 : https://indiankanoon.org/doc/23195824/;

3. Therefore you have a good matter on merits;

4. Make sure that you use more case laws, or your lawyer finds more case laws to help you in your case.

Gowaal Padavi
Advocate, Mumbai
1920 Answers
5 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

In case your mediation fails the court will take his own action but I don't see that the consumer forum will award any amount close to your expectation it will be taking much more time as well because consumer courts it's very slow. You may fight the case till the decision of consumer forum and in case you are not happy with the decision you can move your petition to state consumer commission in Delhi

Vimlesh Prasad Mishra
Advocate, Lucknow
6848 Answers
23 Consultations

4.9 on 5.0

Dont think that your claim for compensation is exorbitant or on the higher side.

The compensation is based on the mental agony and the physical losses you suffered due to their deficiency in service, hence you have justified your claim.

You may not come down with your claim amount, let them also fight the case on their own grounds,

The court after hearing both the sides and based on the facts and faults, it may decide the compensation after which if your not satisfied then you may prefer an appeal before the state commission or national commission accordingly.

T Kalaiselvan
Advocate, Vellore
78104 Answers
1543 Consultations

5.0 on 5.0

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