Thursday, August 03, 2017

Cops to summon airline employee who 'turned away' first-time fliers

Mumbai: Eight months after 32 Tardeo residents' first plane journey turned into a nightmare when they were denied boarding passes for a Delhi-Mumbai flight, the police have decided to call three Jet Airways employees for questioning.
Jet staffers Amit Mukherjee, Gauri Sehgal and Munmum Somdar allegedly turned the group away from the check-in counter at the Delhi airport on November 13 last year, claiming it was late. But the police's inquiry has found that the group arrived at the airport on time.
Cops will now issue notices to the three under section 41A (appearance before a police officer) of the Criminal Procedure Code. A first information report in the case was filed on December 24 last year.
A Jet Airways spokesperson said on Wednesday that the airline cannot comment on the case till it received a formal communication from the police. "Jet Airways has been extending full cooperation to the investigating authority in this case of alleged denied boarding," the official said.
Thirty-five Tardeo residents had pooled their money to travel by air for the first time. They visited Haridwar and Agra. Jayanti Rathod, who was part of the group and later filed the complaint, said they had paid Rs 1.75 lakh for the return flight tickets to travel agent Sachin Verma.
"On November 13, we reached the Delhi airport at 9.45 pm. The flight's departure time was 10.45 pm," Rathod said. "At the check-in counter, we were told we would not be allowed to board as we were late. Only three people from the group were given boarding passes."

The rest of the passengers were asked to buy new tickets. "We could not understand why we were not allowed on the flight. We had reached the airport on time. We eventually bought new tickets costing Rs 10,000 each," he said. "Booking tickets at the last minute is always expensive and we struggled to arrange adequate cash because Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes were banned only a few days earlier."

After the group made it to Mumbai, it decided to approach cops, who took eight months to conduct inquiries.
03/08/17 Vinay Dalvi/Mumbai Mirror