new Delhi: The railway has been hit heavily by an elderly couple. The Railways will now have to pay a compensation of Rs 3 lakh in lieu of not giving a lower berth to the elderly couple. The National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC) has ordered the Railways to pay a compensation of Rs 3 lakh for not giving a lower berth to an elderly couple in a 10-year-old case.
In fact, Divyang, the guideline of the railways, has a tendency to take special care of the elderly passengers. Railway employees but often ignore these rules. In one such case, it was costly for the Railways not to give lower berths to elderly and differently-abled couples and take off about 100 km before the destination.
The whole matter is from Karnataka. While an elderly couple had reserved a seat from Divang Kota in Third AC to go from Solapur to Birur, but they were not allotted lower berths. In the complaint made against the railway, it was stated that despite 6 empty berths in the coach while running the train, the TTE did not give them a lower berth. Not only this, he said in his complaint that he had told the coach attendant and TTE to tell him when he came to Birur station as the train was supposed to reach there in the early hours. But they were unloaded at Chikjajur, about 100 km before Birur, which caused them a lot of trouble.
According to reports, on 4 September 2010, the elderly couple reserved a seat from Divang Kota in Third AC to move from Solapur to Birur, but they were not allotted lower berths from the railways. The couple kept pleading with the TTE to give them lower berths, but present on the spot did not give them a lower berth. Seeing their problems, a passenger gave him his lower berth. But he was very upset till he could not get a seat.
On the complaint of the victim couple, the District Consumer Forum held the railway responsible for gross negligence and lack of service, along with compensation of Rs. 3 lakh 2 thousand and also ordered to pay litigation cost of Rs 2500. After this the matter reached the National Commission followed by the State Commission. Hearing the matter, the National Commission said that the forum has considered every aspect in detail and its decision is based on evidence. The State Commission has also upheld the Forum’s decision after examining it. There is no legal flaw in the verdict. The National Commission dismissed the Railway’s plea as baseless and upheld the order of the District Consumer Forum Order.