House of representatives, Nepal endorses new air travel convention

Meeting of the House of  Representative has approved the ‘Convention for the unification of certain rules for international carriage by Air (Montreal convention-1999) ‘which was presented by Minister of Culture, Tourism and Civil Aviation Mr. Rabindra Adhikari.

This will pave the way for Nepali travelers to get a significant rise in compensation in the case of death, injury, damages to their baggage and delay, Nepal’s Ministry of Culture Tourism and Civil Aviation (MoCTCA) said in a statement on Thursday.

Nepal had been regulating Warsaw Convention 1929 and its protocol to address the issues related to air travel but the convention is however impracticable in the current situation as the compensation to losses are very low. Thus, the Montreal convention was implemented in 1999 to make it easy for air passengers and to terminate all the drawback of the Warsaw convention.

Montreal convention has increased all the compensation related to passenger’s death, injuries, damages to baggage and luggage, damage to cargo and pre-settlement of compensation along with alternatives in the choice of jurisdiction thus it is passenger friendly.

It is also based on strict liability which can make carriers liable to passengers in any sort of accidents even though the carriers can prove no fault from their side. The carriers will also be responsible in the second level out of 2 levels of the convention if the accident is caused by fault from carriers’ side.

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ICAO revises the convention every 5/5 years to make it modern and applicable. The Montreal convention had determined the compensation of 100000 S.D.R in 1999 which was revised to 113100 S.D.R in 2009 A.D.

Pakistan, India, and the Maldives are among the only SAARC countries which have regulated this convention and after Nepal regulates this convention, passengers traveling to and from Nepal will feel secured. The convention will come into regulation after 60 days of depositing in ICAO and all airlines companies operating in Nepal will have to take responsibility of their passengers as per the convention.

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