Parsis: The Zoroastrians of India Pakistan and The World

Minoo Driver Wins £250,000 payout from Air India

A FORMER catering manager has won a long-running battle against ex-employers Air India after the Supreme Court refused to grant the airline an appeal.

By Salina Patel | Skyport Heathrow

Air India was ordered to pay Minoo Driver, who worked in the airline’s inflight services department at Heathrow, around £250,000 to cover money owed to him, compensation, and legal costs.

The judgement was initially made by the Court of Appeal, who ruled in Mr Driver’s favour in July 2011, over overtime and other employment claims.

Since then, the company’s application for permission to appeal the decision was declined by the Court of Appeal, and turned down again by the Supreme Court on February 6, incurring additional legal costs to pay up.

Mr Driver said: "I am very happy I got my dues back and the British justice system was fast.

"I have nothing against the company as it was a personal vendetta from one officer against me."

Of the £250,000, he will receive £100,000 in compensation, of which up to £70,000 is money he is owed. The remaining will cover legal costs.

Mr Driver dedicated 35 years to the airline before retiring in 2007 with substantial payments owing to him, which forced him to take action in the courts.

Originally a Parsee from Mumbai, he had been working for the company since 1972, but his longstanding relationship soured when his grievances were ignored and he was denied contractual entitlements.

The Court of Appeal criticised Air India’s conduct and found Mr Driver to be an honest and truthful employee and his claims to be genuine.

Air India is believed to have told the Supreme Court there was a danger the Appeal Court’s decision would be relied on to impose on employers a duty to pay overtime.

However, the Supreme Court did not accept the argument especially as the case had been the subject of a judicial decision.

Sarosh Zaiwalla of Zaiwalla & Co Solicitors, who was acting for Mr Driver said: "My client and I are delighted with this result and surprised that Air India brought this appeal in the first place.

"The irony is that where on one hand Air India had chosen to ignore Mr Driver’s grievances of unpaid allowances, they have now been burdened with paying Mr Driver his employment claim with accrued interest and Mr Driver’s legal costs in the High Court, the Court of Appeal and now the Supreme Court."

Air India were not available for comment.