SpiceJet asked to compensate for fight delay

AHMEDABAD: A consumer court ordered Spice Jet to pay for four tickets from Delhi to Srinagar to a family after they missed their Delhi to Srinagar flight due to a delayed flight from Ahmedabad in 2010.

Gujarat State Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission ordered the company to pay Rs 34,648 with 9% interest since 2010 to Praful Thakkar and his family, residents of Vastrapur. It also awarded Rs 5,000 as compensation for mental harassment.

According to case details, Thakkar and his friends planned a trip to Kashmir and booked tickets for 12 persons from Ahmedabad to Delhi. From Delhi, the group was to fly by two different flights. When they went to the airport on May 8, 2010, Spice Jet did not allow five of them to board saying that five tickets had been cancelled by Thakkar.

The group took another to Delhi, but four of them missed the flight to Srinagar. The family had to buy four new tickets for Rs 37,512.

Thakkar filed a complaint with the consumer forum and demanded compensation and the money he paid for the fresh tickets. He claimed he had to buy new tickets in Delhi because Spice Jet accidentally cancelled five tickets.

The forum rejected Thakkar’s complaint in June 2011, and the issue got to the commission. Seven years on, the commission held it was the airline’s fault and directed it to pay the difference.

The airline argued that Thakkar cancelled the tickets himself but the court didn’t buy it. It said if Thakkar had cancelled the tickets, it doesn’t explain why the family tried to go to Delhi. Moreover, Spice Jet’s full refund for the five tickets proved there was a mistake on the part of the airline.

The court said Thakkar had booked four tickets from Delhi to Srinagar for Rs 2,864, but had to pay Rs 37,512 for the new tickets. Hence, the airline should pay the difference.
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