A public interest litigation (PIL) was filed in the Supreme Court on Monday seeking directions for the refund of the full amount of the air tickets cancelled due to the cancellation of flights amid the ongoing COVID-19 lockdown.
The PIL, filed by a rights organisation named Pravasi Legal Cell, said that instead of providing full refunds to its passengers, the airlines are providing a Credit Shell, valid up to one year, which is a clear violation of the Civil Aviation Requirement of May 2008 issued by the DGCA.
The petition was moved against the “arbitrary action” on the part of the domestic and international flights in the country of not refunding the full amount collected for the tickets due to the cancellation of flights in the wake of lockdown restrictions.
The DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation) rule states that “the option of holding the refund amount in credit shell by the airlines shall be the prerogative of the passenger and not a default practice of the airline, the petition said.
It said that the DGCA also stated that in case of credit card payments, refund shall be made by the airlines within 07 days of the cancellation to the account of the credit-card holders, while in case of a cash transaction the refund shall be “made immediately” by the airline office from where the ticket was purchased.
It sets a limit of 30 working days for airlines to complete the refund process for tickets booked through travel agents/portals, the plea said.
The petition sought a direction to the airline operators to declare that the action on the part of them (domestic and international) in not refunding the full amount collected for the tickets due to the cancellation of flights in the wake of COVID lockdown as arbitrary and in violation of the Civil Aviation Requirement issued by the DGCA.
The plea also sought directions to the Union of India and others for the airlines operating domestic as well as international flights in India to refund the full amount collected for the tickets booked anytime for travel during the COVID lockdown.
(Source: PTI News)
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