US -Bangla airlines failure to pay compensation prompts families of victims to file 2bn lawsuit against airlines

  • August 1, 2019

File photo of the accident site (Image: Reuters)

Family members of seven Nepali passengers who were killed in the March, 2018 US-Bangla aircrash have moved district court, filing a 2 billion lawsuit against the airlines for failure to pay compensation. 71 people were aboard the ill-fated US-Bangla Airlines Flight 211 arriving into Kathmandu from Dhaka on March 12, 2018 – 51 of the 71, including the pilot and the co-pilot died in the crash. Of the 51 casualties, 22 were Nepalese citizens.

All seven families who filed the lawsuit lost their children – they were aspiring doctors pursuing their MBBS in Bangladesh. The lawsuit was filed at Kathmandu District Court on Wednesday against the firm’s failure to compensate them as per the Montreal Convention 1999, Warsaw Convention 1929 and Hague Protocol 1955.

However, according to media reports, the families may not be able to get a compensation as set by Montreal Accord because the accord was implemented in Nepal after the accident. The families are most likely to get paid as per the Warsaw Convention 1929, because the company is a Bangladeshi company, and Bangladesh Civil Aviation follows the Warsaw Convention.

Under the Montreal Convention, passengers of international flights are insured up to 113,100 Special Drawing Rights (SDR), in case of death or injury. Meanwhile the Warsaw Convention covers insurance up to 100,000 SDR per victim in case of death. (1 SDR = NRS 151). The exact amount to be paid by the airlines will be determined by court.

Families of late Ashna Shakya, Anjila Shrestha, Meeli Maharjan, Neega Maharjan, Princy Dhami, Sanjaya Maharjan and Shreya Jha filed the lawsuit.