Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Government officials present at the airport forced us to fly Reddy: IndiGo

The government received on Monday two diametrically opposed accounts of how TDP MP Diwakar Reddy managed to board an IndiGo flight to Hyderabad last week after he was initially barred following a face-off with the airline's officials at the Visakhapatnam airport.
The report by the Airports Authority of India's (AAI) airport director (APD) says IndiGo staff agreed to let Reddy fly after the APD asked them to. But the airline, offering a blow-by-blow account of the episode, said that it was "regrettably" forced to let the MP board at the behest of government officials present at the airport. Reddy's rude behaviour continued even after he was allowed to board, the airline added.
Reddy was denied boarding last Thursday after he reported late for IndiGo's flight 6E 608. He then misbehaved with airline officials, and sought the help of aviation minister and party colleague Ashok Gajapathi Raju, who happened to be at the airport at the time.
A source privy to the AAI report said: "When the MP spoke to minister Raju, the latter asked the APD to see what the issue is. Raju, who always goes by the book, did not ask the APD to help Reddy. The APD spoke to IndiGo staffers, who said they will fly the MP on 6E 608."
The AAI report makes it look like a consensual decision, where IndiGo gladly accepted the MP. The airline has offered a completely different account.
20/06/17 Saurabh Sinha/Times of India