Thursday, August 26, 2021

Karipur crash victims upset after Air India withdraws support for medical treatment

“We thus take this opportunity to notify you that we shall no longer be paying the cost of any medical treatment or care expenses presented to us beyond 30 days from the date of this letter,” says the last part of a letter from Air India Express Limited sent to many of the victims of the air crash at Calicut International Airport, Karipur on August 7, 2020.

The recent letter from the airline has come as a shock to many of the victims as they have no clue how to continue their medical treatment. Some were offered compensation, which they haven’t yet agreed to as they say that the amount cannot compensate for their loss.

Thirty-seven-year-old Ashraf Moodora from Kozhikode district’s Ivapuram was working in a restaurant in Dubai. When the pandemic struck, he boarded the ill-fated aircraft in the hope that he would return to work after the lockdown. But it has been a year since he’s confined to his home after sustaining severe injuries in his right leg and left unable to walk. “I had many surgeries, some bones were damaged, there was infection in my legs. Doctors say my legs will not be normal as before. I was informed that when everything opened up in Dubai someone was replaced in my post. I have no job and will not be able to go to work in the near future due to the treatments,” Ashraf says.

He was the sole breadwinner for his family. “I have two children aged 13 and 8, wife and elderly mother to look after. If the airline stops paying treatment expenses, we have no idea how to carry on,” he adds.

Initially Air India gave Rs 2 lakh to all victims who were seriously injured. However, the victims say that this amount will be deducted from the final compensation as per the agreement they signed. “The compensation they are offering now is not enough. I had a salary of more than Rs 1 lakh per month. As a person with disabilities, what job can I get? Moreover, they have stopped paying the treatment expenses, so we are still waiting for a better compensation offer from the company,” Ashraf explains.

26/08/21 News Minute

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