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PIL in Kerala HC seeks court-monitored probe into Kozhikode plane crash

ANI | Updated: Aug 15, 2020 17:59 IST

Kochi (Kerala) [India], Aug 15 (ANI): A public interest litigation (PIL) has been filed in the Kerala High Court seeking to immediately close the Kozhikode International Airport and order a court-monitored open inquiry into the plane crash, in which at least 18 people were killed.
The petition, filed by one Yeshwanth Shenoy on Friday, also demanded a criminal investigation into the cause of the plane crash by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
Shenoy, in his plea, claims that the air crash was similar to the air crash of Mangalore that had occurred on the May 22, 2010, and alleged that the airport officials and the state authorities had been issued several warnings before both the accidents about the dangers at the airports, especially after the Mangalore crash.
It claimed that the officials deliberately ignored to take any corrective measures to rectify them and cited several references to emails/letters by Justice VR Krishna Iyer to the then Prime Minister and Chief Justice of India regarding the state of aviation safety in the country.

The Union of India, Airport Authority of India, Directorate General of Civil Aviation, Air India Express and Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau were named as respondents in the plea.
The plea asserted that aviation safety is in a critical state in Kozhikode airport and in other airports across the country and claimed that several norms prescribed by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and other domestic norms are being deliberately violated in India due to rampant corruption and a failure of the system.
It also demanded the removal of Jasbir Singh Larhga from the panel of investigators citing his "questionable inquiry" in the Ghatkoper crash and sought to replace him with a more appropriate officer with impeccable integrity.
The plea, demanding a criminal investigation into the crash by the CBI, said that the local police are unequipped to handle the complexities of air crash investigations which might reveal faults of governmental bodies not situated in Kozhikode.
"There is a prima facie case for the involvement of the CBI and in the absence of such investigation and criminal prosecution of officers involved, we will never be in a position to avoid these air crashes," the plea submitted. (ANI)