Kota Man Receives Rs 35 Refund From Railways After 5-Yr Fight; Helps 3 Lakh Other IRCTC Users

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Kota Man Receives Rs 35 Refund From Railways After 5-Yr Fight; Helps 3 Lakh Other IRCTC Users

A man from Kota won his five-year-long fight to get a ₹35 refund from the Indian Railways, helping almost 3 lakh people facing the same issue in the issue.

A man from Rajasthan's Kota assisted 3 lakh rail passengers in getting a refund from the Indian Railways by winning a 5-year-long fight to get a ₹35 refund from the Railways. Years after the initial case, the Railways has finally approved ₹2.43 crore in refunds to approximately 2.98 lakh IRCTC users, revealed the Kota-based engineer named Sujeet Swami, while quoting an RTI response received by him.

Swami also revealed that he had filed nearly 50 Right to Information applications and discharged letters to four different government departments in his bid to get back ₹35 charged as service tax in spite of cancelling him cancelling his ticket before the GST regime was implemented.

Justice After 5 Years!

Swami stated the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC), in its response to his RTI query, told 2.98 lakh users -- who might have bought multiple tickets -- would receive a refund of ₹35 on each ticket, amounting to total of ₹2.43 crore.

"My repeated tweets to demand the refund, tagging the PM, Railway minister, Union minister Anurag Thakur, GST Council and the Finance minister played key roles in the approval of refund of ₹35 to 2.98 lakh users," Swami was quoted as saying in a ZeeNews report.

What Did He File In RTI?

In April 2017, 30-year-old Swami had booked a railway ticket from Kota to New Delhi in the Golden Temple Mail to kick off a journey on July 2, just a day after the brand new GST regime became active. However, the engineer had cancelled the ticket priced at ₹765, after which he had received a refund of the amount of ₹665 with a deduction of ₹100 instead of ₹65 due to the cancellation.

Swami claimed the extra amount of ₹35 was charged to him as service tax even after cancelling the ticket before implementing Goods and Services Tax (GST). The 30-year-old started his fight to secure the refund of ₹35 by sending RTI queries to the Ministry of Finance and the Railway.

As per an RTI response to this, the IRCTC citing the commercial circular number 43 of the Ministry of Railways, said for tickets booked before the implementation of GST and cancelled after implementation, service tax charged at the time of booking shall not be refunded. Therefore, ₹100 (₹65 as clerical charge and ₹35 as service tax) was charged against the cancelled ticket, it claimed.

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Writer : Snehadri Sarkar
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