‘Luckiest Person’ Left Behind

United Press International

A 21-year-old Canadian student, who begged for--but was refused--a seat on the Air India jumbo jet that crashed near the Irish coast, flew to London on Monday saying, “I must be the luckiest person alive.”

Saloni Negi, 21, a student at the University of Alberta, said she had been trying to get on ill-fated Flight 182 to visit relatives in India.

“I don’t know why I’ve been given the gift of life when all those people have died,” Negi said at London’s Heathrow Airport. “It’s very upsetting to know that someone was sitting in the seat I wanted and gave up their life so that I could live.”

She said that on the day of departure, she went to Air India’s offices in Montreal and begged them to get her on the flight. They said it was impossible because it was full.


“When I heard about the crash, I just went completely numb. I still don’t know why I was spared,” she said.

Negi eventually flew to New York and boarded another Air India flight to London.

“I felt nervous about flying at first after hearing the news but not much more than the normal anxieties you get when you travel by air,” she said.