Scott Rains alerted me to the following news report. It seems that the act of discrimination against wheelchair users is not limited to Malaysia’s AirAsia. The Hindustan Times news titled Airline Displays Callousness in December 19 reported that Sanjiv Sachdeva was asked to sign a bond to absolve Jetlite from all responsibilities should anything happen to him in a flight on December 16. Jetlite is an India-based low cost carrier. Sanjiv has filed a complaint with the Directorate General of Aviation and the Commissioner of Diabilities.
In the same newspaper report, another wheelchair user Mahesh Chandrashekar was subjected to similar conditions by Deccan, India’s first low-fare airline. Mahesh was reported to have said that the language used in the indemnity form sounded prejudiced, embarrassing, derogatory and appeared as if a favour has been doled out to a passenger with disability who is travelling on a fully-paid ticket.
Indemnity forms are worded in such a way that the person who signed it absolves the airline from all blame should anything happen. Too bad if that person dies or is injured as a result of flying with the airline. To add insult to injury, if the airline has to incur additional costs because of that person, the said person has to bear all that. Tell me, where is justice in that? Heads I lose. Tails also I lose. Mana boleh? Unbelievable? Go read the indemnity form that Airsia made me sign.