Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday said all those who had been on board the Air India Express flight which skidded off the runway at the Kozhikode international airport killing 18 people on Friday evening, would be tested for the Covid-19 infection. So far, only one of the victims has tested positive for the viral disease.
The chief minister also announced a compensation of Rs 10 lakh each to the next of kin of the passengers who died in the air crash that took place at the Karipur International Airport last evening, a statement from the Kerala chief minister’s office (CMO) said.
Besides the compensation for the victims, the Kerala government would bear the medical expenses of all those injured in the plane crash irrespective of the hospitals they are in, Vijayan said. The chief minister has given directions to the administration and health authorities to provide proper medical aid to all survivors.
Pinarayi Vijayan on Saturday also lauded the “fast response” of the local people in being the first to reach the aircraft crash site to rescue passengers, braving inclement weather and Covid-19 fears.
The Air India Express flight from Dubai with 190 people on board overshot the tabletop runway at the airport in Kozhikode while landing amid heavy rainfall and fell into a gorge 35 feet below splitting into two parts on Friday night.
Vijayan, who has rushed to Kozhikode, said in a tweet that the fast response of the local people and the officials made all the difference. “Yesterday, the fast response of local people and officials made all the difference. They braved bad weather and Covid-19 fears to rescue their fellow beings,” the CM said in a tweet.
The long queues of people who had volunteered to donate blood were just another example of locals coming forward to help, Vijayan said.