Court throws out lost luggage suit by AirAsia X passenger

AirAsia X lawyer Ruebankumar Asokan, at the Magistrate’s Court in Balik Pulau today.

GEORGE TOWN: The Magistrate’s Court in Balik Pulau here today dismissed a suit brought by an AirAsia X passenger claiming losses over a piece of luggage that went missing on a flight from Penang to Melbourne, Australia, two years ago.

Magistrate Nur Azzuin Abdul Moati also ordered the passenger, Ragindran Sivasamy, to pay RM1,000 in costs to the airline.

Ragindran had sued AirAsia X on Jan 28, 2019, demanding RM11,700 in damages as well as costs, special damages and other reliefs deemed fit by the court.

In his statement of claim, he said the airline had failed to honour its promise to send his luggage to the Melbourne Airport from the Penang International Airport on the June 19, 2017 flight which also saw a layover at klia2.

He said he had enquired after his luggage several times upon returning from his trip, but that no action was taken. He also lodged a police report on the matter.

He said the incident was a clear case of negligence by the airline and its staff, and claimed there was a lack of strict procedure for handling luggage.

According to Ragindran, his losses comprised a Rado wristwatch worth RM3,000, a pair of Ray-Ban sunglasses (RM1,800), winter clothing (RM3,000), other branded items of clothing (RM2,000) and RM1,900 spent buying replacement clothing in Australia.

AirAsia X, in its statement of defence, said Ragindran had agreed to its terms and conditions including a statement of limited liability concerning the loss of baggage.

It said it had never denied the loss of luggage and had offered compensation according to the terms set. It also denied that it had been negligent in handling Ragindran’s luggage.

Ragindran was represented by lawyer Syahril Rezwan Abdullah while Ruebankumar Asokan represented AirAsia X.

Ruebankumar told reporters outside the court that Ragindran had been offered compensation of US$300 or RM1,255 for his lost luggage, in line with the terms and conditions of his flight ticket.

He said the tariffs for compensation were spelt out at US$20 (RM84) per kg. As Ragindran’s bag weighed 10kg, AirAsia X had initially offered him US$200, which he refused.

“When we offered US$300, which was higher than the compensation amount, he declined, too,” he added.

Ruebankumar said in trial, Ragindran claimed he had not seen AirAsia X’s terms and conditions when buying his ticket.

He questioned the claim, noting that those buying tickets online must click “agree” to the terms and conditions before the tickets can be purchased.

Syahril, meanwhile, told FMT that he would be filing an appeal against today’s decision.