Rs 10,000 Fine On Indian Railways For Downgrading AC 2 Ticket To AC 3 Without Any Intimation


Rohit Kulkarni

Rohit Kulkarni

Feb 18, 2024


The Manager of Northern Railway and the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has been asked by the District Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission in Chandigarh to pay a sum of Rs 10,000 to a Zirakpur resident for unilaterally downgrading his berths and those of his family members from 2nd AC to 3rd AC on a train journey.

Rs 10,000 Fine On Indian Railways For Downgrading AC 2 Ticket To AC 3 Without Any Intimation

Zirakpur Man Takes IRCTC & Northern Railway to Court

Punit Jain, the complainant, said that on August 2018 he had purchased confirmed 2nd AC tickets for himself and his family from Vaishno Devi to Chandigarh on the Shree Vaishno Devi-Kalka Express which costed him Rs 2,560 each.

However, when he along with his family, reached the Katra railway station on October 20, 2018, their berths were downgraded without any prior communication.
After this, Jain tried to resolve the issue with the Travelling Ticket Examiner (TTE) was in vain and they were forced to travel in the 3rd AC compartment. This caused dismay to the complainant’s family due to unhygienic conditions and the lack of 2nd AC amenities.

Later, Jain requested the refund for the differential on the ticket between a 3 AC ticket and 2 AC ticket, but that too was denied to him. He later emailed the entire matter to the Sub-Divisional Manager/Divisional Manager of Northern Railway and the IRCTC. Adding to his disconcert, there was no reply on his email.

Notably, the 2nd AC costed Rs 1,280 per ticket whereas 3rd AC costed Rs 765 per ticket. This meant Jain took a financial hit of the difference of approximately Rs 515 per ticket.

As per the Sub-Divisional Manager/Divisional Manager of Northern Railway, the required certificate was not provided by Jain and he also filed the issue after an extended period, making it non-maintainable.

Commission Fined IRCTC & Northern Railway

IRCTC’s stance on this matter was that it was just a service provider for online bookings and not responsible for the reliefs sought by Jain.

On the grounds of deficiency in service and unfair trade practices by Northern Railway and the IRCTC, the case was ruled in favour of Jain by Commission.

As a result of the conclusion, Commission asked Northern Railway and the IRCTC to pay Jain Rs 1,005 with 9% annual interest from October 20, 2018, onwards, along with Rs 5,000 as compensation and Rs 4,000 as litigation costs.


Rohit Kulkarni
Rohit Kulkarni
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