Haryana Roadways told to pay Rs. 2000
Businesses tend to forget that consumer is king, and without the consumer, a business has no purpose to be in existence. The government has started a luxury bus service under Haryana roadways. Customers accept the terms and conditions by default when the purchase the ticket but that does not mean the Service provider does not have any obligations to the customer.
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If customers intend to get a refund, they are required to give prior notice for cancellation to give the service provider sufficient time to acquire the lost funds from elsewhere. That is one side of the coin; the other favors the customers for refund. If the service provider is at total fault and cannot deliver, the customer is entitled to full refund. In this case Haryana Roadways failed to respect the terms and conditions; the Consumer Protection Act favored the party which it was made for.
News Article Facts:
Sector 59 Mohali resident, Prateek Narang was forced to purchase an Rs.4164 air tickets from IGI Airport Delhi to Chandigarh after a Haryana Roadways Volvo bus, which he purchased a Rs. 705 ticket online was unavailable on October 19, 2018, 4:30am at IGI Airport. Even after confirmation of the ticket, Haryana Roadways did not indicate why the bus was not present at that time.
Upon inquiring, the complainant found out that a strike caused Haryana Roadways buses from fulfilling their obligations to all the ticket holders; thus resorting to purchasing the air ticket. The complainant emailed Haryana Roadways on October 26, 2018 and requested compensation for causing avoidable expenses but Haryana Roadways followed their terms and conditions; returned the Rs. 705 bus ticket minus Rs. 25 cancellation fee: only Rs. 680.
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Haryana Roadways also stated that the complainant was not entitled to any relief other than the refund of the e-ticket amount. The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum favored the complainant, directing Haryana Roadways to pay Rs. 2000 for charging Rs. 25 as cancellation fee when this circumstance did not fall under the terms and condition. The strike may be force majeure but Haryana Roadways was most likely pre-notified of the date of occurrence of the strike. The complainant’s ticket should have been given notice of cancellation from the service provider to prevent the complainant from suffering further financial loss of purchasing an air ticket.
Legal Stand Point:
The Consumer Protection Act was fully utilized to award the complainant Rs. 2000 for a mistake made by Haryana Roadways. Additional damages would have been awarded if the complainant’s counsel pressed for it. The terms and conditions of the service provider were not applicable and compensation was due but was not given most likely because of Force Majeure of the strike (uncontrollable outside forces) that has caused an unpreventable loss to the service provider also; this may not be the exact reason, further analysis of the case can prove so.
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For case specific advice/details contact TOP/BEST/EXPERT Consumer Forum Lawyers Advocate in Chandigarh, Panchkula and Mohali Punjab Haryana.
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