Indian teen successfully sues airline after it crushes his dream of going to Nasa

The consumer forum granted a compensation of £1,550 to the teenager

Mayank Aggarwal
Tuesday 01 June 2021 07:33
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<p>File image: NASA astronauts Shannon Walker, Victor Glover, Mike Hopkins, and JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) astronaut Soichi Noguchi, who comprise Crew-1, walk at Kennedy Space Center ahead of the NASA/SpaceX launch of the first operational commercial crew mission in Cape Canaveral, Florida, US, 8 November, 2020</p>

File image: NASA astronauts Shannon Walker, Victor Glover, Mike Hopkins, and JAXA (Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency) astronaut Soichi Noguchi, who comprise Crew-1, walk at Kennedy Space Center ahead of the NASA/SpaceX launch of the first operational commercial crew mission in Cape Canaveral, Florida, US, 8 November, 2020

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An Indian teen successfully sued an Indian airline for crushing his dream of going to Nasa and won Rs 160,000 (£1,550) in compensation.

On the morning of 10 August, 2019, Kevin Martin, a resident of Bengaluru, capital of India’s southern state of Karnataka, was scheduled to board a flight of IndiGo airline from Chennai to Delhi, from where he was scheduled to take a flight to the US.

However, Mr Martin was reportedly not allowed to board the flight even though he had a valid ticket on the ground that the flight was overbooked. He was offered an alternative flight in the evening but that meant he would have missed the connecting US-bound flight from Delhi, reported India Today.

In 2019, Mr Martin secured the second rank in a nationwide entrance examination to India’s premier engineering institutes. He had won a competition at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Guwahati, and was supposed to go to Nasa for a trip.

But his Nasa dream was crushed because of the airline mishap. In December 2019, he filed a case with a consumer forum against the airline.

The consumer forum recently ruled that IndiGo needs to pay Mr Martin a total of Rs 160,000 (£1,550) including Rs 100,000 as compensation, Rs 50,000 as costs for mental pain caused by interruption of his plans and Rs 10,000 for the trial cost. The consumer forum also directed the airline to refund the money spent on his flight ticket from Bengaluru to Delhi.

IndiGo, in a statement, said they believe that the matter was handled in “full compliance with applicable guidelines concerning overbooking, including by offering appropriate compensation to the customer, which was declined by the customer.”

“IndiGo will now follow due process in taking necessary steps in accordance with law on this matter,” the statement said.

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