Friday, October 13, 2006

Families of Air India crew still haunted by memories

Ottawa: Anil Hanse has changed his job, sold the family home and moved to a new country, but he can't extinguish the memory of how his father died at the controls of Air India Flight 182 more than two decades ago.
"I still live the events and find that it permeates into everything I do," Hanse told a public inquiry Thursday.
Capt. Narenda Singh Hanse was the pilot in charge of the ill-fated plane.
His son was in Aberdeen, Scotland that day, headed for a North Sea oil rig where he worked as a deep-sea diver, when he heard the first radio report that the plane had plunged into the Atlantic off the Irish coast. The next few days were a blur of shock and pain, he said. But that was nothing compared to what lay in store, as the Canadian police investigation dragged on and the courts failed to convict most of the key suspects.
Hanse quit the diving trade, packed up and moved with his mother Sheila to Australia, but even there they found little peace. Sheila Hanse, in a written statement read into the record Thursday, noted that the financial consequences of losing the family's main breadwinner only added to the devastating emotional impact. She and her son were unaware that the Canadian government, Air India and a variety of other defendants had reached a series of settlements in the early 1990s that saw more than $20 million go to the families of victims who resided in Canada and who had launched civil suits in the Canadian courts.
"Why this discrimination?" she asked.
12/10/06 Jim Brown/CP/680 News, Canada