In what could set a precedent in disputes between fliers and airlines over ticket refunds, a consumer court ordered SpiceJet and Tata AIG General Insurance to pay compensation of Rs 15,000 to a Vashi resident for failing to return his booking amount.
A SpiceJet spokesperson told HT: “We can’t comment on the matter as we are yet to receive the order.”
The Mumbai Suburban Dist-rict Consumer Disputes Redre-ssal Forum also directed the airline to refund Rs21,844 paid by Dr Uday Thanawala for return tickets for Mumbai-Varanasi (December 2, 2007) and Delhi-Mumbai (December 6, 2007) flights. He had paid Rs22,618 in all, which included insurance cover for a complete refund in case the booking was cancelled.
Thanawala met with an accident in October 2007 and cancelled the bookings. But, when he sought a refund on the terms shown in an advertisement on the SpiceJet website, he was refunded only Rs4,500. Thana-wala approached the consumer court in July 2008, saying the advertisement stated that the insurance was provided for a full refund in case of cancellation because of an accident.
SpiceJet and Tata AIG said they adhered to the policy terms while returning the amount.
The bench, comprising forum president JL Deshpande and member VG Joshi, however, observed: “The proposal is misleading… the [airline] has not offered insurance cover as promised.”