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Passengers crowd at the Jet Airways ticketing counters at the domestic airport terminal in Mumbai September 9, 2009 (Representational image).Reuters file

Passengers complaints in India more than doubled in May when compared with the previous month, indicating all is not well when it comes to customer service in the thriving aviation space. The compensation paid to air travellers also shot up over the past few months.

Statistics compiled by the civil aviation ministry show that the number of passenger complaints shot up to 96,361 in May from 46,833 in April. The number stood at 56,663 in March, down from 63,832 in February, according to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).

Compensation paid by carriers also increased accordingly to Rs. 1.92 crore in May from Rs. 1.33 crore in April, Rs. 1.32 crore in March and Rs. 82.5 lakh in February this year.

The maximum complaints were lodged under the category of "delays", followed by "cancellations" and "denied boarding," the DGCA data showed.

Deficiencies and compensation in May

State-run Air India topped the flight "delays beyond two hours" with 43,827 complaints, resulting in a compensation of Rs. 72 lakh. Overall, deficiency in services resulted in the carrier paying Rs.1.08 crore during the month to passengers. The Jet Airways-JetLite combine paid Rs. 37 lakh for denying passengers to board. Go Air and Indigo did not have to pay compensation in cash during the month.

Deficiencies and compensation in April 

Flight delays of more than two hours topped the list, with Air India shelling out Rs. 65 lakh as compensation to passengers. The overall hit on the state-run carrier was Rs. 89.66 lakh. The Jet Airways-JetLife combine paid Rs. 25.92 lakh for denying boarding. Go Air, Vistara and IndiGo did not pay financial compensation in April.

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