• Consumer rights of railway passengers

FACTS OF THE CASE: I along with my family consisting of my wife and child of 07 months had to travel by rail from Chengannur (Kerala) to Ahmedabad on 30 Sep 2013.  Accordingly a tatkal ticket was booked from the ticket counter at the boarding station with great difficulty for travel by Veraval Express which was scheduled to leave at 17:32 hrs on 30 Sep 2013 and reach the destination at 07:15 hrs on 02 Oct 2013.  After confirming the train running status on the railway enquiry 139 and also on the online portal for live train running status (both of which claimed the train to be running on right time) I along with my family reached the station only to learn that the train has been rescheduled to 10:00 hrs on 01 Oct 2013 (due to bad weather conditions at Mumbai and the konkan route).  The said train reached the destination well past midnight at 01:25 hrs on 03 Oct 2013.

GREIVANCE:  The physical and mental hardships that one has to face for obtaining a Tatkal Railway ticket are immence.  In may case I reached the reservation counter on 28 Sep 2013 by evening 19:30 hrs and queued up outside the counter gates just to ensure that I get a confirmed ticket and maintained the queue for 15 hrs altogether till 10:00 hrs on the following day when the reservations open for tatkal tickets, thus ensuring that my family won't have to suffer during the journey.  However, the train was rescheduled and delayed by more than 17 hrs without any intimation by what so ever means (It may be noted that the contact number and address of the passenger are mentioned on the reservation slips).  It is also noteworthy that the railways charges an extra Rs.350 per passenger for tatkal 3AC tickets.  By not intimating about the delay of which the railways was very much aware well in advance, it is an intentional lapse on part of railways pushing its customers into stress and agony.  As I was taken by surprise I could not manage to choose any alternative routes to reach my detination on time.  Things were more worse by the fact that I reached my destination past 1 o'clock at night with my wife and seven months old daughter which was the least desirable thing I would have wished for.  The mental stress, tension, agony and physical stress sufferred by me and my family were immence.

ADVICE NEEDED:
1. Can a compensation be claimed form the railways on the above grounds?
2. A somewhat similar case was addressed by the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission vide REVISION PETITION NO. 4882 OF 2013, link at
http://164.100.72.12/ncdrcrep/judgement/00140123105447209RP488213.htm
3. No action being taken by railways to avoid recurrence in spite of court rulings.
4. How can I fix the quantum of compensation?
Asked 2 years ago in Business Law from Gandhinagar, Gujarat
if you have precedents of court rulings then you can rely upon the said judgements to claim compensation for delay in journey and for mental trauma that you have undergone . 

in similar case national commission has awarded only nominal compensation for late running of trains .
Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
23211 Answers
1218 Consultations
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ompensate for late running train: National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission to Railways
PTI Dec 6, 2011, 04.36pm IST


Tags:
Railways|National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission|Karnataka State Consumer Commission|Anupam Dasgupta
NEW DELHI: Railways have been directed to pay Rs 2,000 as compensation to a senior citizen, who fell ill after being stranded post midnight at a station in Karnataka, by the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission.

A bench presided by Anupam Dasgupta rejected the revision petition filed by South Western Railway against the judgement of Karnataka State Consumer Commission which had directed it to pay compensation of Rs 2,000 to Karnataka resident Balasaheb Bangi.
Ajay Sethi
Advocate, Mumbai
23211 Answers
1218 Consultations
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1. You can filr a complaint case before Consumer forum for deficiency in service by providing wrong information in its website, if you have the screen shot,

2. The compensation paid for late running of train through court order is rare.
Krishna Kishore Ganguly
Advocate, Kolkata
12104 Answers
230 Consultations
5.0 on 5.0

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