Malaysian Airlines told to pay for mishandling luggage

January 31st, 2009 - 11:43 am ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Jan 31 (IANS) Holding Malaysian Airlines responsible for mishandling a passenger’s baggage, a consumer court here has asked it to pay Rs.315,000 - the price of the damaged luggage - alongwith with the cost of litigation.The Delhi State Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission headed by Justice J.D. Kapoor earlier this week upheld a District Consumer Forum order asking the airlines to compensate Rakesh Bawa, a resident of Gurgaon, for his damaged baggage.

The airlines had filed an appeal in the state consumer commission, challenging the 2007 district forum order.

The district forum had held the airlines deficient in service in not handing over the wheel chair purchased by Rakesh from the US, which was a check-in luggage upto New Delhi, in perfect condition.

As the electronic controller of the wheel chair was found missing, the consumer forum had directed the airlines to refund the full value of the wheel chair amounting to $6,668 (Rs.315,000) with additional compensation of Rs.20,000 and Rs.2,500 as cost of litigation.

Rakesh had booked four pieces of baggage from the US to be delivered at New Delhi but only three pieces were delivered. Two pieces of baggage were damaged, the cost of one of the bag was claimed in the Property Irregularity Report to be equivalent of Rs.2,000 and the bag was stated to be two years old.

Initially, Rakesh had claimed award of $1,500 as compensation for loss of the electronic controller of the wheel chair. He later amended the amount to $6,668 on the plea that the supplier of the wheel chair in the US had informed him that he would be required to take the chair to the US to programme it and its controller together since there was no authorised dealer for the product in India.

‚ÄúSince it is a case of the most significant part of the wheelchair, which controls it electrically, the appropriate course would be to direct the appellant to refund the entire cost of the chair,” Kapoor said.

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