Courts rule a group of 16 Hindus who were served meat by a restaurant can sue to pay for a trip to India to have their souls cleansed so they don’t burn in Hell.
A hot button topic on local NJ radios is a group of 16 Hindus claiming they will burn in hell if they don’t go to the Ganges river to be spiritually cleansed after a local restaurant fed them meat after assuring the meal was free of meat.
The Gothamist reports:
Jersey Judges Say Vegetarians Can Sue Restaurant For Feeding Them Meat
Can vegetarians sue a restaurant for serving them meat? A panel of three appellate judges in New Jersey have decided that yes, they can. A group of 16 Jersey Hindus, claiming they were spiritually injured, are suing the owner of the Indian restaurant Moghul Express in Edison for serving them a platter meat-filled samosas when the restaurant had promised it only served the vegetarian variety. The group is now seeking monetary damages to cover the costs of a trip to India to cleanse themselves in the Ganges River.
The whole thing started back on August 10, 2009, when the group placed their order. Though the restaurant’s menu only listed vegetarian samosas the party double checked that the pastries would not be filled with meat and were told that was the truth. But of course, despite a label saying “VEG samosas,” it wasn’t. While eating them the group got concerned and called to triple-check and were again assured they were eating vegetarian samosas. Finally, they brought the samosas back to the store where, according to the complaint, an employee admitted that the treats had been inadvertently switched with an order of meat samosas for another group.
The Hindus then sued in Superior Court, alleging negligence, negligent infliction of emotional distress, consumer fraud, products liability and breach of express warranty. That suit was initially dismissed by a judge, but yesterday an appellate panel reversed that decision because of the breach of express warranty aspect: the suit goes on because the restaurant had assured the group it was eating vegetarian samosas.
Source: The Gothamist
If Landmark lawsuit succeeds and damages are awarded to the group of Hindus the case will have a significant impact by setting a precedent for a series of similar cases going forward.
Unfortunately, cases of the restaurants feeding customers food customers can day they can not eat it is an all to common occurrence.
While the case in question involves spiritual damages the damages could have just as easily been physical injuries due to an allergy caused by the food.
At the end of the day it should perhaps be the responsibility of the companies manufacturing and serving food to assure the food is safe for customers to eat.
But that raises and entirely different issue, especially in regard to foods being served that companies refuse to released the ingredients for such as genetically modified food and various additives added into food at fast food restaurants.