A total of 22 claims for disability and hospitalisation due to the Odisha train accident have been lodged with the general insurance companies under the IRCTC travel accident insurance scheme for train passengers till date, said the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI).
In the tragic accident that happened early this month, 288 passengers were killed and more than 1,000 were injured.
A total of 624 passengers were having insurance cover under the Indian Railway Catering and Tourism Corporation Ltd’s (IRCTC) travel accident insurance scheme, the IRDAI told IANS.
Out of that, 22 claims have been lodged for suffering disabilities — permanent total and permanent partial — due to the accident and for hospitalisation expenses. Fortunately no claim for the death of an insured passenger has been lodged till date, the IRDAI said.
According to IRDAI, out of the 22 claims received, two are for permanent total disability, 15 are for permanent partial disability and five for hospitalisation expenses.
The IRDAI said two claims have been settled for Rs.2.25 lakh and the remaining 20 claims have to be settled.
The total amount claimed was Rs. 60.52 lakh and after the settling two claims Rs.58.27 lakh remain to be settled.
The IRDAI said the claims are pending with the insurers for want of documents and the passengers are treated/getting treated in government hospitals.
The IRDAI has held two meetings with the CEOs of the insurance companies to review the claims. The list of passengers who got insurance through IRCTC are also circulated to other insurers, so that they can settle any other claims apart from IRCTC.
IRDAI had advised the insurers on June 3 to start claims process, suo moto, and to settle the claims expeditiously. Guidelines were issued on June 5 for faster settlement of claims and advised the insurers:
– to appoint of designated official for settlement claims;
– give the details of office/camps to settle claims on the website, media and other channels;
– to process the claims proactively, if the Insurer name is in the list of injured/deceased;
– to launch awareness campaign, and
– publish management information systems (MIS) on the websites.
The IRCTC has selected SBI General Insurance and Liberty General Insurance to offer the travel accident insurance cover.
Those who reserve the train tickets through the IRCTC ticket booking portal can opt for accident insurance for Rs 10 lakh by paying a paltry premium of Re 0.35 paise.
The policy covers death/disabilities/medical expenses due to a train accident during the travel.
According to IRCTC’s regulatory filing of investor call transcript, during the last quarter of FY23, a total number of 10.44 crore tickets have been booked and 14.54 crore passengers have been booked on these tickets.
For the entire FY23, IRCTC had earned Rs 802 crore revenue from the Internet ticketing service.
A total of 43 crore tickets were booked on IRCTC portal, the company said.
And in the last quarter of FY23, the convenience fee that IRCTC had earned was nearly Rs 197 crore.
When the insurance scheme was started in 2016, the premium was 0.92 paise per passenger with Shriram General Insurance Company Ltd, ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company Ltd, and Royal Sundaram General Insurance Co. Ltd being the insurers.
Meanwhile, the head honchos of SBI General Insurance and Liberty General Insurance maintained silence when IANS queried about the claims details.