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Delhi High Court Issues Notice In Plea Seeking Setting Up Of Committee To Review Quality Of Food, Medical Supplies, Other Amenities In Flights

Nupur Thapliyal
25 April 2021 2:25 PM GMT
Delhi High Court Issues Notice In Plea Seeking Setting Up Of Committee To Review Quality Of Food, Medical Supplies, Other Amenities In Flights
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The Delhi High Court on Monday issued notice to Ministry of Civil Aviation, Airport Authority of India and Air India in a plea seeking directions on the Respondents to set up an Independent Committee for reviewing quality and quantity of food, medical facilities in order to tackle emergency needs and other amenities used by passengers at the time of boarding and deboarding flights.A single...

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The Delhi High Court on Monday issued notice to Ministry of Civil Aviation, Airport Authority of India and Air India in a plea seeking directions on the Respondents to set up an Independent Committee for reviewing quality and quantity of food, medical facilities in order to tackle emergency needs and other amenities used by passengers at the time of boarding and deboarding flights.

A single judge bench comprising of Justice Pratibha Singh issued notice in a plea filed by an elderly couple traveling to USA in business class in an Air India flight in November last year alleging that while the couple was only given one single meal in a 16 hour long flight, they were not provided with sufficient food and medical supplies.

The petition filed through Advocate Nivedita, states that Air India owed a duty of care towards its passengers' health and safety which was neither fulfilled nor acknowledged.

"Petitioners' are aggrieved by the fact that none of the Respondents have made available a responsive or functional grievance redressal mechanism for such complaints which risks the health and safety of passengers and had serious consequences to Petitioners health and their delicate position keeping in mind that Petitioners' are both senior citizens and Petitioner no. 1 has diabetes." The petition reads.

Furthermore, highlighting that the petitioners were dehydrated and weak due to the food poisoning during the flight, the petition states that Air India failed to adhere to the Civil Aviation Requirements(CAR) for airworthiness and did not have the required number of first aid kit with necessary medications to deal with routines issues like stomach upset and dehydration and hypoglycemia.

Addressing other missing amenities inside the flight, the petition states thus:

"That it is pertinent to mention here that besides food , the basic up keep and clearance of trash was also absent and my clients travelled in appa lling unhygienic condition with un-cleared trash lying on the floor near till the end of flight, despite many requests to clear it that too in a pandemic scenario."

In view of this, the petition states the following prayers:

- Pass a writ order or direction on the nature of a writ of mandamus thereby directing Respondents to set up an independent committee or body to review quality and quantity of food to be served to passengers depending on flight durationto avoid risking life of passengers clue to starvation.

- Pass a writ or order or direction in the nature of a writ of mandamus directing Respondents to ensure compliance with DGCA Civil Aviation Requirements for Air Worthiness Series X Part III effective from 01.12.2010 qua medical supplies in aircraft to help counter and tackle emergencies on board.

- Pass a writ order or direction in the nature of a writ of mandamus thereby directing Respondents should ensure proper demarcation of a amenities between various agencies like Airport Authority/Airline like club carts and wheelchairs, escalators its availability to all passengers at the time of boarding and de- boarding.

- Pass a writ order or direction in the nature of a writ of mandamus thereby directing Respondents to ensure a respon sive/functional grievances redressal mechanism on board as well as online with responsive helpline number.

- Pass a writ, order or direction in the nature of a writ of mandamus thereby directing the respondent no.3 to return the fare in the sum of Rs.2,25,000/- compensation for securing booking by making false representation, violation fundamental right to life under Article 21 of Constitution.

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