Families of air crash victims to move to Apex Court

Families of air crash victims to move to Apex Court

Assn also plans to meet Union Civil Aviation Minister this week

The Kerala High Court single bench judge Justice P R Ramachandran Menon in his judgement on the petition filed by Abdul Salam, who had lost his 24-year-old son B Mohammad Rafi in the air crash, had held high the Montreal Agreement.

Accordingly, the victims’ family members are entitled to claim a compensation of one lakh Special Drawing Rights (SDR), (which is around Rs 78 lakh) per head. The significant judgement was delivered on July 20, 2011.

However, the Kerala division bench set aside the judgment of the single bench, thus allowing the petition filed by the insurance companies on August 25.
In wake of contrast judgement, Abdul Salam has decided to move to the Supreme Court backed by the Association. Speaking to the media persons following the Association meeting at Sahodaya Hall on Sunday, Association President Mohammad Beary said that Abdul Salam should move to the Apex Court before November 25.

 “We would require Rs 10 lakh for the Supreme Court proceedings, hence we have decided to collect Rs 20,000 each from the victims’ families. We would send letters to all the families and would meet them in person and seek their help. If the SC gives judgement in our favour, then it is like winning the battle,” he said.

Legal Advisor of the Association Varadaraj Kayangal said that the Supreme Court has to interpret the decision of the single bench and the divisional bench and uphold one of the orders.

Quoting the HC single bench order he said, “the carrier shall not be able to alter or limit its liability and each family should be compensated with a minimum amount of one lakh SDR as per Article 21 (1) of the Montreal Agreement.”

Meanwhile, the office-bearers of the Association will meet Union Civil Aviation Minister Vayalar Ravi, MP’s of both ruling and opposition parties this week in Delhi. Mohammad Beary said that they would discuss the matter with the Minister and request him to fulfil their demands. “If he fails to give favourable response, then we would stage a protest march to the airport,” he informed.

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