Saturday, March 25, 2017

Airlines under government scanner for banning unruly Sena MP Gaikwad

New Delhi: All those rejoicing Indian carriers' decision to bar Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad from flying should keep their celebrations on hold.
The government is examining the 'legality' of all schedule Indian airlines' move to bar him from flying. Air India, IndiGo, Jet Airways, SpiceJet and GoAir had issued the first-of-its-kind no-fly order for an individual on Friday, a day after the MP had beaten up an AI staffer with his sandals. Tata Group airlines, Vistara and AirAsia India, have also decided to bar Gaikwad for their flights.
"The airlines have advised us that they would not be willing to carry this particular passenger (Gaikwad). We are studying their inputs on this matter. This is an action they have taken independently and we are examining it. Any action undertaken has to be lawful; it has to fit in with the general provisions of the law and the Aircraft Act. We are seeing how this whole approach should work. We have to see if this action of the airlines is within the framework of law," Jayant Sinha, Union minister of state for aviation, told TOI.
If the government says the ban is not in conformity with the law, then there could be a face-off with Indian carriers who, for once, are unanimous on the issue of not allowing Gaikwad on their flights.
"A common citizen would have been arrested on the spot for behaving like this. The MP stayed on the aircraft for 40 minutes and had to be 'requested' to alight. A common man even threatening to stay inside an aircraft and abusing crew would be handed over to security and jailed," fumed an airline official.
25/03/17 Saurabh Sinha/Times of India