Case: – Mr. Ganji Kailash Chander M/s. MakeMy Trip India Pvt. Vs. M/s. MakeMy TripIndia Pvt.; C.C. No 550 of 2022
In a significant ruling, the Hyderabad District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission-III held MakeMyTrip responsible for deficiency in service and unfair trade practices. The case involved Mr. Ganji Kailash Chander, a businessman booked four flight tickets to the USA through MakeMyTrip, only to face cancellations due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
MakeMyTrip initiated a refund to the wallet without clear communication. Despite assurances, the refund was not reflected in the wallet. Legal notice sent by Kailash received no response, leading to the consumer complaint.
MakeMyTrip contended that they acted as an intermediary between the complainant and the airline. They claimed no deficiency in service, offering flexible tour options or a refund to the MakeMyTrip wallet. The company insisted that the complainant’s refund was processed to the wallet and could be used for future bookings.
On the other hand, the Airline i.e. Emirates argued that the complaint exceeded the time limit specified under the Carriage by Air Act, 1972. They asserted no service deficiency from their end, as they had already refunded the ticket cost to MakeMyTrip. Emirates Airlines placed responsibility on MakeMyTrip to pass on the refund to the passenger.
The Commission found MakeMyTrip’s refusal to refund as unfair, constituting both deficiency in service and unfair trade practices. The ruling directed MakeMyTrip to refund Rs. 3,18,987/- with 12% interest from the booking date, along with compensation of Rs. 50,000/- and costs of Rs. 5,000/-. Punitive damages of Rs. 10,000/- were also ordered. The commission dismissed the complaint against Emirates Airlines, as they had already refunded the amount to MakeMyTrip.
This landmark decision reinforces consumer rights and emphasizes the responsibility of service as well as holds travel intermediaries accountable for transparent communication and timely refunds during such challenging circumstances.
Author of this article:
Adv. Ravish Bhatt,
Partner, R&D Law Chambers,
Dual Qualified Lawyer Solicitor | International Tax Affiliate
Connect with Mr. Bhatt on Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/adit-ravishbhatt/
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