Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Kerala High Court issues notice in plea seeking interim closure of Calicut Airport, probe into Air India mishap

The Kerala High Court has sought the response of the Central government in a public interest litigation (PIL) petition seeking a CBI probe into the Air India Express flight mishap at the Calicut international airport in Kerala that killed 19 passengers in August this year. (Yeshwanth Shenoy v. Union of India and Ors.).

Apart from the prayer for a CBI probe, the petitioner-in-person, Advocate Yeshwanth Shenoy, has also sought an inquiry into the general functioning of the Calicut airport and the closure of the airport for the time being.

On Monday, Chief Justice S Manikumar and Justice Shaji P Chaly issued notice to the Ministry for Civil Aviation, the Airports Authority of India (AAI), and the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) in the matter.

In his petition, Shenoy has alleged that the airport at Calicut flouted domestic air regulations, which in turn flow from international norms set by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

Stating that he had repeatedly warned State authorities about the safety of the Calicut airport, Shenoy has prayed for setting up a Court of Inquiry headed by a retired High Court/ Supreme Court Judge under the Aircraft (Investigation of Accidents and Incidents) Rules, 2017.

The petitioner has asserted that the AAI and the DGCA had knowledge of the violations in the construction of the airport.

11/11/20 Lydia Suzanne Thomas/Bar and Bench

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