Kochi: Kerala High Court today issued notices to the Centre and Air India on petitions by relatives of two cabin crew who perished in the May 2010 Mangalore air crash that claimed 158 lives seeking compensation of Rs 75 lakh as stipulated by the Montreal Convention.
When the petitions by Syed Iqteder Ali, father of Mohammed Ali (25) from Bhopal and Panchami Rana, mother of Yugantar Rana (25) from Darjelling, came up for hearing, Justice T R Ramachandran Nair ordered issuance of notice.
The petitioners submitted that the Air India was forcing them to accept a compensation limited to a maximum of Rs 35 lakh under the Workmen's Compensation Act, 1923 while the crew should be treated as claimants towards compensation of an international passenger.
According to their counsel, Kodoth Sreedharan, the petitioners felt the cabin crew also came under the category of international passenger according to the Carriage by Air India Act of 1972 and should be paid one lakh Special Drawing Rights (SDR)-- totalling Rs 75 lakh each as stipulated under the Montreal Convention that governs compensation rules for air mishaps.
Earlier in July 2011, on a petition by the relatives of one of the passengers killed in the crash, a single judge of the high court had ordered Air India to pay Rs 75 lakh compensation to each of the passengers. But the order was set aside by a division bench following which an appeal has been filed in the Supreme Court.
One hundred and fifty-eight passengers and crew onboard the Air India aircraft from Dubai were killed when the plane overshot the runway and caught fire after one of its wings hit a hillock at Kenjar in Mangalore on May 22, 2010.