This is an article that discusses how the cancellation fees policy of the railway which was made for the convenience of the passengers is working with good efficiency, however, there are many instances where certain loopholes are created which will easily go unnoticed unless we find ourselves in that situation. From deciphering the refund policy to finding possible situations about the same, the article has tried to cover all the possible solutions and loopholes which is eventually reducing the efficiency of railway online ticket cancellation. This article which is written by Ketan Aggarwal a student of National Law University Lucknow will place forward many hypothetical situations and reasoning so that we can understand these loopholes and find equitable solutions.
A week before I was planning to travel from my college to my home city through the Indian railways. I have my tickets booked in the 2nd AC but it was on Waitlist number (2) two. This means that if (two) 2 people doing the same journey from this train cancels their ticket then only I am eligible for this ride. After researching again and taking help from my friends I was finally able to get a confirmed ticket for a different train doing the same journey. Now feeling relieved I then went to the IRCTC website to cancel my waiting ticket. Seems fair enough? But the thing that makes me furious is I had been charged cancellation fees just for canceling a waiting ticket which is not even confirmed.! This makes me realize to jump into the Indian railway cancellation policies and write something out of it.
There is almost every person in this country who have once in his lifetime has traveled and reached his destination through Indian railways, With around 22,593 active trains (9141 freight and 13,452 passengers) with a daily passenger count of 24 million people and 203.88 million tonnes of freight, India has the world’s fourth-biggest railway network. This ultimately means that a huge number of people also cancel their booked tickets because of the many reasons, but several questions revolve around one’s mind and where railways have certain loopholes like, what happens If I cancel my waiting list ticket? Am I eligible for a refund if I cancel my tatkal ticket? etc. now let us dwell upon them deeply and find out how these loopholes are ultimately impacting the efficiency of railways.
The cancellation charges in railways are governed by The Railway Passengers (Cancellation of Ticket and Refund of Fare) Rules, 2015. For all classes, prepaid rail tickets may now be purchased 120 days in advance.
According to IRCTC, this reservation period (ARP) does not include the day of the train’s departure. Second, according to IRCTC, E-tickets (online tickets purchased through the IRCTC portal) can be canceled online until the chart is generated.
On railway counters, e-ticket cancellations will not be possible. In addition, the refund will be refunded to the account used to purchase online tickets (after the deduction of applicable cancellation charges).
The amount deducted is determined by the time of cancellation and the state of the train ticket at the time of cancellation, according to IRCTC.
- If a confirmed ticket is canceled online more than 48 hours before the train’s scheduled departure, the following are the minimum per person flat cancellation costs for the ticket
- For AC first-class or executive class, Rs 240 will be deducted.
- For AC two-tier or first class, Rs 200 will be removed.
- For AC three-tier, AC chair vehicle, or AC 3 economy class, Rs 180 will be removed.
- For sleeping class, Rs 120 will be deducted.
- For the second class, a fee of Rs 60 shall be determined.
- If you cancel a booked ticket within 48 hours and up to 12 hours before the train’s planned departure, you will be charged 25% of the fee.
- If you cancel a confirmed ticket between 12 hours and four hours before the train’s planned departure, you will be charged 50% of the amount paid.
- Tickets purchased online (E-tickets) cannot be canceled once the chart is produced which is Four hours before the departure of the train.
- If your train is canceled due to unforeseen circumstances, e-tickets will be automatically refunded. There will be no need to file a TDR or a ticket deposit receipt.
Clerkage Charges, which are virtually routinely applied to all Waitlisted Tickets of reserved classes at Rs 60/- per head (excluding 2S Class, where it is Rs 30/- per head), are known as Clerkage Charges. In the case of AC and FC classes, however, GST is applied.
Interestingly, when RAC / Reservation Against Cancellation tickets are canceled, the same Clerkage Charges are charged from the fee, even if a space occurs on the train (due to passengers not turning up).
Moreover according to Railway Board letter No. TCII/2003/2015/Refund Policy Paragraph 11, Section A—” There should be no refund of fare shall be admissible on confirmed Tatkal Tickets”.
This Policy looks customer-friendly which is providing a refund for canceling the tickets even before 6 hours of Scheduled Departure however small in percentage. However, this policy has certain loopholes which will easily go unnoticed unless we find ourselves in that situation. Let’s take hypothetical examples for all the situations.
If a customer purchases a ticket and it is confirmed at the time of cancellation, the railway charges a cancellation fee. Okay, it’s reasonable. However, when a passenger cancels a waiting list ticket, the railway then also charges a cancellation fee. Imposing a cancellation fee on tickets on the waiting list is completely irrational and unjustified.His ticket cancellation grounds might include, for example, the knowledge that if he purchases tickets for other trains, he may receive a confirmed ticket or a ticket with a shorter waiting time. Perhaps he does not have the time to wait for confirmation of his ticket, is in a hurry, and wants to organize a different route or mode of transportation. Imposing a cancellation fee under such circumstances is not a just cause from the side of railways.
After this let us come to the Tatkal Ticket Scenario, As we already know railway does not even provide a 1% of refund for the cancellation of a tatkal ticket and keeps itself 100% of the amount with itself as a cancellation charge, It requires people to keep their tickets even if they are unable to travel or have abandoned their journey.
As they are not getting anything, users do not cancel the ticket (refund). As a result, anyone on the 1,2,4,5, or any other waiting list will not be able to receive a confirmed ticket and will be unable to travel. As a result, it is an issue for the user. The regulation of not issuing a refund is unreasonable. Any proportion of fare, such as 25% of the ticket fee, should be refunded by the railway.
So, here’s how it goes: You bought a tatkal ticket, but your plans changed, and you won’t be able to get your money back anyhow, so you don’t bother canceling it (waste of money and time if you go and cancel it as you will not get anything over it). But because of this, any other passenger who is on the Tatkal waiting list will not be able to make up his journey because his ticket still shows that the seat is on waiting and in reality the still be vacant throughout the journey.
The IRCTC cancellation policy is passenger-friendly and in all possible cases the Railway provides Compensation to the fellow passenger who cancels his journey because of any reason, but as we highlighted and dwell upon these possible situations, where no compensation is provided or cancellation fees are levied upon passengers without any just cause.
The contention about the cancelation of the Tatkal Ticket can be removed if we can find some alternative to it. One alternative for the Indian Railways is that some advantage should be provided to the fellow passenger who wishes to cancel a Tatkal ticket because their plans have been canceled, even if it is minor. For example, offer them a 25% – 40% return on the booking price. Giving only 25% to the person who is canceling his Taktak ticket will ultimately benefit everyone involved in this circle. The next person who is on tatkal waiting will get his seat confirmed and the railway will be getting 100% ticket price from him which they never receive if they don’t pay compensation to the earlier person canceling his ticket.
With demand, railways can fill any number of seats at any time, so why not make the most of it? I believe our Railway Minister is aware of this and is negotiating a return for tatkal cancellations. I’m hoping it sees the light of day soon.
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Swedish geneticist Svante Paabo receives Nobel Prize in Medicine
The Nobel Prize in Medicine or Physiology 2022 was awarded to Svante Paabo for his discoveries concerning the genomes of extinct hominins and human evolution, announced the award-giving organisation on Monday.
“The Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institute has today decided to award the 2022 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine to Svante Paabo for his discoveries concerning the genomes of extinct hominins and human evolution,” read the Nobel Prize statement. The 2022 Nobel Prize laureate Svante Paabo found that gene transfer had occurred from the now extinct hominins to Homo sapiens.
This ancient flow of genes to present-day humans has physiological relevance today, for example affecting how our immune system reacts to infections, the statement said.
Svante Paabo has established an entirely new scientific discipline, pale genomics. By revealing genetic differences that distinguish all living humans from extinct hominins, his discoveries provide the basis for exploring what makes us uniquely human.
Through his pioneering research, Svante Paabo accomplished something seemingly impossible: sequencing the genome of the Neanderthal, an extinct relative of present-day humans. He also made the sensational discovery of a previously unknown hominin, Denisova, entirely from genome data retrieved from a small finger bone specimen.
Importantly, Paabo also found that gene transfer had occurred from these now extinct hominins to Homo sapiens following the migration from Africa around 70,000 years ago, the statement read. Svante Paabo is a Swedish geneticist specialising in the field of evolutionary genetics who was recruited to the University of Munich in 1990, where, as a newly appointed Professor, he continued his work on archaic DNA.
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The new family portrait of Britain’s Royal Family has been unveiled. Buckingham Palace has shared the new photo of King Charles III with Queen Consort Camilla Parker Bowles, Prince William and Kate Middleton.
According to Page Six, the photo was clicked the night before the Queen’s funeral. The photo was posted on social media through the royal family’s official account and was clicked by photographer Chris Jackson.
In the photo, Kate Middleton is seen wearing a long-sleeved black dress along with black tights and pumps. Prince William, on the other hand, opted for a classic suit.
Camilla Parker Bowles wore a black embroidered dress, while King Charles III also wore a classic suit like his son.
According to Page Six, the photo was taken at the pre-funeral reception that Buckingham Palace hosted a day prior to the funeral of the Queen, where many world leaders, including US President Joe Biden, were also present.
Many people noticed the absence of Harry and Meghan from the family portrait on social media.
Britain’s longest-serving monarch died hours after the palace said that the Queen was under medical supervision at Balmoral after the doctors expressed their concern over her health.
Her death was followed by 10 days of official mourning and a grand procession of events that were followed around the world, culminating in her state funeral in London and burial at Windsor.
The coffin of Queen Elizabeth II was lowered into the Royal Vault at Windsor Castle in London after the committal service.
Imran challenges Pak govt to arrest him over leaked audio
As the controversy regarding the leaked audio continues in Pakistan, former Prime Minister Imran Khan has challenged the coalition government led by the Pakistan Muslim League (N) to arrest him.
At a public gathering in Taxila, Punjab on Sunday, the deposed leader said PML-N vice-president Maryam Nawaz wanted the cypher to disappear in a bid to hide the conspiracy hatched by PM Shehbaz Sharif’s party. “This is the movement of real independence and we are ready to face jails. I am ready to go to jail and for my nation as well. “We are not afraid of jail,” he was quoted as saying by The Nation.
The cypher is an alleged secret diplomatic cable which fueled conspiracy theories that the US administration wanted to topple Imran Khan’s government and facilitate regime change in the country.
The cypher is based on then-envoy Asad Majeed’s meeting with US State Department official Donald Lu, who has been at the centre of PTI’s claim that the US conspired to dislodge Imran from office in April.
During his address, Khan said, “They have started a new drama regarding the disappearance of the cypher while its master copy is in the office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Maryam Nawaz can ask her ambassador about it, “he added.
While referring to the Pakistan army, he said, “Those who could prevent the conspiracy from succeeding, if they call themselves neutral at this time, the nation will never forgive them.” Pakistan’s Federal Cabinet has formally given the go-ahead to start legal action against former PM Imran Khan over the recent audio leaks that purportedly featured him and his aides discussing a US cypher.
On Friday, the Pakistan federal cabinet met with Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif in the chair.
‘With Grateful Recognition’: How an Indian American bagged Lifetime Achievement award in U.S.
Vivek Lall, an Indian-origin General Atomics Global Corporation chief executive, is honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award by US President Joe Biden with a citation of ‘With Grateful Recognition’.
The citation was given to Lall, who has a PhD in Aerospace Engineering from Wichita State University in Kansas, by AmeriCorps and the Office of the President. It was also personally signed by the President of the United States, as per the official statement.
AmeriCorps is a part of the US government. The organisation aims to foster activities that bring Americans closer together to “serve communities.”
Lall, an industry leader and scientific community titan, works as Chief Executive at General Atomics. The company is a global leader in the specialised fields of nuclear technology and has developed state-of-the-art Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) like the Predator, Reaper and Guardian drones.
Lall, the son of an Indian diplomat, was one of the handful of individuals with Indian origins to have been invited to meet Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi this past year during his Washington visit.
Notably, prior to his leadership position at General Atomics, Lall worked for organisations such as NASA, Raytheon, Boeing, and Lockheed Martin; his experience and accolades have been regarded as unparalleled by many in the scientific community and long-term industry observers alike.
He is serving as a US Technical Team Member for the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) Science and Technology (STO) with the Pentagon.
He was appointed in a critical advisory role to the US Cabinet Secretary, heading the Department of Transportation, encompassing entities like the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), in 2018.
No digital twin for Bruce Willis
Hollywood star Bruce Willis has denied selling the rights of his face to an AI company to create his ‘digital twin’.
According to Deadline, it was widely reported last week that the actor sold the rights to his face to a Russian deepfake company called Deepcake.
This would have allowed them to create a ‘digital twin’ for the actor, who retired in March following his diagnosis of aphasia, a condition affecting a person’s speech.
According to Deadline, Willis’ spokesperson denied any kind of partnership or agreement with the company this weekend. Deepcake confirmed this to a British news outlet.
Deepfake companies use artificial intelligence to create realistic simulations of famous figures.
A deepfake of Willis appeared in an advert for a Russian telecoms company last year.
Deepcake claims to have worked with the actor on the AI for the ad and used a glowing recommendation from him on their website, but Willis’s people did not confirm this, as per Deadline.
This comes after ‘Star Wars’ veteran James Earl Jones handed over the rights of his unique Darth Vader tones to another AI company, Respeecher, indicating that he was retiring from the role, and passing the baton through use of technology.
Taiwan disapproves of China’s false claims about its sovereignty
Taiwan on Sunday rebutted Chinese Premier Li Keqiang’s remarks about the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) resolve to achieve unification and said that it sought to undermine the legitimacy of Taiwan.
Taiwan will never accept Beijing’s attempts to undermine its sovereignty, the Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said yesterday, after the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) at its National Day celebrations in Beijing vowed to achieve unification with Taiwan, reported Taipei Times. The council said the statement was an attempt to undermine the legitimacy and sovereignty of Taiwan. “We will never accept such ideas,” it said.
The CCP’s statement was not conducive to peaceful cross-strait relations, the council said, reported Taipei Times.
The event, hosted by the Chinese State Council, featured Chinese President Xi Jinping, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, the other five CCP Politburo Standing Committee members and Vice President Wang Qishan, among others.
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