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Finger cut, passenger demands Rs 5.1 lakh

New Delhi, May 10: If the consumer court rules in favour of Pandit Parmanand Katara, this finger cut could turn out to be very expensive.

Katara, who injured his finger on a luggage trolley at Calcutta airport, is seeking Rs 5.10 lakh in damages from the airport, the Airports Authority of India and Air Deccan.

The three will now have to explain to the State Commission for Consumer Disputes Redressal, New Delhi, why they did not attend to Katara, a veteran of 67 PILs filed in courts across the country, when he hurt his finger on September 25, 2005.

He is suing them for “physical injury, mental agony, undergoing pain, loss of professional work, insecurity and deficiency in services in not providing proper medical aid”.

The commission, which includes the president, S.L. Khanna, and members S.R. Aggarwal and Devender Raheja, today issued notices to the three respondents charged by Katara with “negligence and apathy” towards his “suffering”. They have to reply by June 21.

In his complaint, under Section 12 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1986, Katara told the commission that he was injured while on his way to Delhi from Calcutta by Air Deccan’s flight DN/63 at 10.30 am on September 25. He put his luggage on the trolley and was going for the security check when his finger was cut by the trolley’s left iron handle.

“The complainant started bleeding. He was suffering from acute pain and shock as he was all alone at the airport. He rushed for medical help leaving his luggage near the trolley. The doctor on duty treated him with an injection and advised further treatment. But the Air Deccan staff did not bother about him and left him in the lurch!” Katara’s complaint says.

Subsequently, he complained to almost everyone in authority ' the AAI, Air Deccan officials, including the managing director, and even civil aviation minister Praful Patel.

“But no one has addressed my grievance,” he told the commission, “I had to rest for three days after the injury and lost invaluable work hours.”

The complaint will be heard again on June 21.

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