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Case Law Details

Case Name : Mr. Meet Shah Vs Union of India, Ministry of Railway (Competition Commissioner of India)
Appeal Number : Case No. 30 of 2018
Date of Judgement/Order : 09/11/2018
Related Assessment Year :
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Mr. Meet Shah Vs Union of India, Ministry of Railway (Competition Commissioner of India)

Railway and IRCTC (Opposite Parties) have not been able to convince the Commission as to why the policy of rounding off of actual base fares to the next higher multiple of Rs.5 is applicable to the sale of online tickets, when it may be possible for the Opposite Parties to transfer even one paisa electronically. Further, during the preliminary conference, the Opposite Parties could not explain why rounding off is done separately for each passenger even when more than one tickets are booked through one account of the same time for a journey.

At this juncture, it appears that the Opposite Parties are rounding off the actual base fares for the online bookings without any plausible justification for the same. In view of the foregoing, the Commission is of the view that the practice of rounding off actual base fares to the next higher multiple of Rs. 5 by the Opposite Parties, prima-facie amount to an imposition of unfair condition in the market for sale of rail tickets in India, particularly for online booking of rail tickets, in contravention of provisions of Section 4 (2)(a)(i) of the Act.

Based on above discussion, prima-facie, a case of contravention of the provisions of Section 4 of the Act is made out against the Opposite Parties. Accordingly, the Director General (the DG) is directed to cause an investigation into the matter and submit his report within a period of 60 days from the receipt of this order.

It is made clear that, if during the course of the investigation, the DG comes across anti­competitive conduct of any other entity/person in addition to those mentioned in the information, the DG shall be at liberty to investigate the same. Also, the DG is directed to conduct a detailed investigation without restricting and confining to the duration mentioned in the information.

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