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Air passengers to get higher compensation for accidents

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Air passengers will get higher compensation in case of death, injury, lost baggage or inordinate delay in flights as the Carriage by Air (Amendment) Bill was passed by the Parliament on Friday.

Once the Bill gets the nod of the President, the domestic airlines will be required to pay compensation amount equivalent to international airlines standard.

The compensation in case of death in an air accident or bodily injury will go up to around Rs1.05 crore, up from Rs.93 lakh at present. This amount would be computed on the basis of SDR (Special Drawing Rights). The currency value of the SDR is based on market exchange rates of a basket of major currencies – US dollar, euro, Japanese yen and pound sterling. One SDR is equivalent to Rs.93.

The liability for flight delays will increase to Rs.4.36 lakh from Rs.3.86 lakh at present. In case of destruction, loss or inordinate delays in case of cargo carriage, the liability amount has been raised from Rs,1,581 to Rs.1,767.

For destruction, loss, damage or delay of baggage, the domestic airlines will have to pay Rs.1.05 lakh from the present Rs.93,000.

This will be in line with the Montreal Convention, which was acceded to by India in May 2009. The International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) will increase the liability limit once every five years.

Passengers who travelled by domestic airlines during January 2016 went up by 22.58 per cent to 76.55 lakhs compared to the same month during the previous year.

A compensation of 114.09 lakhs was paid to 116, 091 passengers due to delays, according to a statement posted on the website of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation.

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Printable version | Sep 22, 2017 1:57:49 AM | http://www.thehindu.com/news/national/air-passengers-to-get-higher-compensation-for-accidents/article8346914.ece