On the evening of 7th August 2020, an Air India flight crashed upon landing, taking 18 lives, including both pilots, with it. The flight was part of the Vande Bharat Mission to bring back Indian citizens, stranded in Dubai due to the COVID-19 pandemic, to Calicut International Airport, India. The aircraft was carrying more than 150 passengers.
The accident is frighteningly similar to the 2010 Air India Express Flight 812 accident which too overran the runway at the Mangalore International Airport killing 158 people on board.
This tragedy might make the airline company responsible to pay compensation of Rs 1.19 crore to every passenger’s family in case of death or any physical injury due to negligence.
How is the compensation calculated?
These liabilities have been defined under The Carriage By Air (Amendment) Act of 2016 for international flights, based on India’s acceptance of the Montreal Convention in 2009, which merged rules controlling compensation to passengers overseas.
According to the newly amended law, the liability money for damage in case of death or physical injury for any individual was increased from 1,00,000 Special Drawing Rights (SDR) to 1,13,100 SDR, which is roughly equivalent to Rs 1.19 crore. 1 SDR is equivalent to $1.41, while Indian Rupee closed at Rs 74.93 to the US dollar on Friday night.
What to expect with the newly amended Montreal Convention?
According to the 2014 official gazette by the Ministry of Civil Aviation, aviation companies were responsible to pay up to Rs 20 lakh to every passenger or their kin, in case of death or physical injury during domestic flights.
In case of any natural death, the airlines are not accountable for compensation on both domestic and international flight.
As per the latest reports, Air India Express has stated that they will pay a temporary compensation of Rs 10 lakh to the family of the deceased passengers of the age of 12 and above. Rs 5 lakh is to be provided to the kin of deceased passengers below the age of 12.
All the critically injured passengers will be provided Rs 2 lakh while Rs 50,000 to all other passengers injured in the accident.
Will the liabilities really be provided?
If we look at the case of the Mangaluru air crash casualties, the families of the victims had to really run around to get their reimbursement.
Families of many victims of the 2010 crash have still not obtained their share of the money.
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This post is tagged under: Air India, Vande Bharat Mission, Indian, Dubai, COVID-19 pandemic, Calicut, Kozhikode, Calicut International Airport, Captain Deepak Vasant Sathe, accident, dead, Mangalore International Airport, Montreal Convention, Special Drawing Rights, US dollar, Indian Rupee, Ministry of Civil Aviation, compensation, compensation to families, paid, payment, government to pay damages