3 June 2019: Just because Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is kind and generous does not mean every living soul in Canada is so. Specially not at airports, shows the nightmarish experience of elderly Nepalese mom and dad who were reportedly left in their wheelchairs without any assistance to access food, water and restrooms – for twelve hours.
The horrible treatment of Narayan and Chhaya Karki, both in their late sixties and wheelchair-bound, took place last February when they were flying from Kathmandu to Edmonton, the capital city of Alberta.
According to CBC News, the Karkis flew into Vancouver Airport with Cathay Pacific and were supposed to fly on to Edmonton, their final destination, with WestJet.
The couple’s son began frantically calling both Cathay Pacific and WestJet trying to locate his parents after they failed to arrive at Edmonton on time. However, despite Mohan Karki spending “six or seven hours” on phone, employees of both the airlines could not track down his missing mom and dad.
They were reportedly found only “steps from the service counter” (of WestJet).
Mohan Karki told CBC News that his parents had placards that clearly had his details. However, no one came forward and helped them call their son although they tried to draw people’s attention to their plight.
The son however agrees that no one probably understood what his parents were saying because they didn’t speak English.
The Edmonton-based son of the Karkis now wants answers from both the airlines company as to what happened to his parents while they were in transit at the Vancouver Airport on February 23.
However, Cathay Pacific and WestJet are both washing their hands off the case indicating both parties did their part in fulfilling their responsibilities to the elderly couple.
Cathay Pacific maintains that its staff followed the regular operating procedure when they delivered them at the service counter of WestJet.
Cathay Pacific claims it followed the “standard operating procedure” when it delivered the couple to WestJet staff and exchanged wheelchairs, the CBC news report states.
“The proper turnover to WestJet was made by our staff. Additionally, we are in the process of reviewing this situation with WestJet and we will apply learnings from this experience to future transitions between our airlines,” the report further quotes Julie Jarratt, Cathay Pacific’s communications director,as saying.