Consumer VOICE

Airtel asked to pay Rs 44.5 to consumer for internet data loss

A consumer disputes redressal commission of Ahmedabad Rural has ordered leading telecom company Bharti
Airtel to refund an amount of Rs 44.50 to a consumer for data loss, caused by the blocking of internet services between 27 August and 4 September 2015 due to the Patidar quota agitation, which had turned violent. The commission has asked the company to pay Anjana Brahmbhatt Rs 44.50, with a 12 per cent interest from 26 August 2015.

Brahmbhatt had approached the commission after the company refused to refund the amount. The commission,
in its order, maintained that not paying the refund amounted to an unfair trade practice.

Brahmbhatt had paid Rs 178 for a 2GB internet package, valid for 28 days. After internet services were suspended in Ahmedabad district, following a circular issued by the police commissioner, she was unable to use internet on her phone during the period for which she had bought the package. She also mentioned in her application that following the suspension of the services, she was unable to do online banking, shopping, etc., besides being denied access to social media and instant messaging platforms such as Facebook and WhatsApp.

The company argued that the services were suspended following an order of the police commissioner, which had instructed the telecom companies to block the services, so that rumours were not spread and the law-and-order situation remained under control. It had further contended that the interruption in the services was caused due to a government order and the company had nothing to do with it.

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