In response to a PIL, DGCA has specified that if an airline has already received ticket money from an agent but the agent has not received the same from the passenger, on cancellation, the credit shell can be utilised by the passenger up to March 31, 2021, where the passenger needs to pay the agent. If credit shell is unutilised till said date, the airline will refund the agent. The affidavit clarifies, “If the tour operator has already paid the money to the airline for purchasing the ticket for the client but the client is yet to pay that money to the agent, then on cancellation of ticket and converting it in to credit shell, the ticket will remain in the name of passenger and in case passenger utilises the credit shell he will pay to the agent and not to the airline. However, in case the passenger does not utilise the credit shell till 31st Mar 2021, then the airline will have to refund the amount as per proposed formulation and money will go back to same account of the agent from which the ticket amount was paid to the airline.” Additionally, “In case the passenger in whose name the ticket is booked does not utilise the Credit Shell till 31st March 2021, then the airline will have to refund the amount with interest prescribed in the formulation to the agent from whose account the ticket was booked.”
The affidavit also states: (i) for passengers who have booked tickets prior to lockdown for travel upto May 24, 2020, refund of fares to the passengers covered under this category shall be governed by the proposed formulation related to credit shell and incentive scheme; (ii) for passengers who booked tickets during lockdown for travel during lockdown, passengers covered under this category shall be entitled for immediate refund of the fare by the airline as the airlines were not supposed to book such tickets; and (iii) For passengers who booked tickets at any period of time but for travel after May 24, 2020, refund of fares to the passengers covered under this category shall be governed by the provisions of CAR.