Family mourns ‘warm and friendly’ Manpreet who died on plane, as medical reasons prevent repatriation

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell Jul5,2024
Key Points
  • Manpreet Kaur was on her way to visit family in India when she died on a Qantas flight before it took off in Melbourne.
  • Kaur’s uncle says her family are preparing papers to visit Melbourne for her funeral.
  • She is being remembered as “a warm and friendly person with high family values”.
Manpreet Kaur, 24, suffered a medical episode shortly after boarding a Qantas aircraft bound for India at Melbourne’s Tullamarine Airport on 20 June.
Mithu Singh, Kaur’s paternal uncle, said her family were now preparing papers to travel to Melbourne for Kaur’s funeral.
“We (her family) were on our way to the New Delhi airport to receive Manpreet when we heard the sad news of her passing away,” Singh told SBS Punjabi in an exclusive interview.
He described Kaur as “a warm and friendly person with high family values”.
No official statement has been made about the cause of death.
Kaur had been living in Melbourne since 2020 as an international student and Singh said she was looking forward to a brighter future in Australia.
Singh said Kaur, who hailed from the Mansa district of Punjab in northwestern India, had had some health concerns in recent months.
“After recovering from COVID, Manpreet suffered from some respiratory-related health issues and had difficulty in talking to us over the phone,” he said.
“Her wish to meet her family in person after a gap of four years could not be fulfilled.”

The Australian government is unable to send Kaur’s body back to her homeland as the coroner is still investigating the cause of the illness that led to her death.

Unsuccessful attempts to repatriate the body

“At this time of grief, we are running around to get our paperwork done as the Australian government has refused to send the body back home,” Singh said.

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According to reports, Kaur was looking at a photograph of her parents on her phone before she passed away.
Qantas Airlines confirmed that Kaur “required medical attention shortly after boarding”. The airline said urgent assistance was provided by both crew and emergency services “but sadly she passed away”.
“Our thoughts are with Manpreet’s family and her loved ones,” Qantas said in a written response to SBS Punjabi.
Victoria Police declined to comment as the matter is before the coroner.
Kaur is survived by her parents in Punjab and a brother, who recently moved to the US.
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Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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