Saturday, August 19, 2017

Indian National Accuses Turkish Airlines of Discrimination

An Indian national travelling to Nigeria from Istanbul has accused Turkish Airlines of discriminating against him due to his nationality.

The passenger who narrated his experience on an audio recording shared on social media, claimed to have been a Business Class passenger on a Turkish Airline flight to Nigeria.

He explained that he decided to relax in the resting suites provided for business class passengers as he had an 8-hour layover at the airport.

According to him, an employee of the airline informed him that he couldn’t use the suites because he was an Indian, and he was traveling to Nigeria.

He also said the employee told him that the company has a policy that only allows passengers from Western countries or those travelling to Western countries to use the suites.

Below is the transcript of the audio:

“I’m sitting in Turkish Airline Business Class Lounge I have a layover here from 10:30 am to 6: 30 pm , that is over 8 hours. So I went to see if there is a place where I could sleep,” he said.

“I go to the desk on the wall there is a notice saying: “Only for Business Class passengers”. I said fantastic, I’m a Business Class Passenger. And it said it for people who have layover of six hours and more and I said fantastic, I satisfied that also. I have a layover of six hours and more.

“I said to the lady who is there at the desk: Please, can I sleep? Where is the suite, where can I go and have some rest? She said No sir, where are you coming from? I said Mumbai, India and I am going to Nigeria.

“She said but then you can’t sleep. I said why not? She said that’s the rule. I said what rule?

“She showed me a list of countries. You have to be coming from them or going to them only then that Turkish Airline recognise that you need sleep.,” the passenger recounted.

“So if you don’t go to those countries and you don’t come from those countries, an of course all European countries are part of that Washington, is part of that New York is part of that, and so on. Other than that if you come from India and so forth and basically a non-white country it is assumed that you don’t need sleep.

“So here I’m sitting, even though I’m a Business Class passenger on Turkish Airline, Even though I have a long layover, I’m not allowed to sleep in the sleeping suite of the business class lounge. According to me because I’m not white. According to their rules because I’m from India and I’m going to Nigeria.

“I think this is something that should be brought to the notice of the highest authorities. Including the president and including the head of the Turkish Airline to say that on what basis do you discriminate on your customers and between your Business Class passengers.

“I’m absolutely certain that if this is how the Turkish Airline treats its passengers then this is my first and last time on Turkish Airline.,” he said.
19/08/17 Bitrus Iliyasu/Olisa

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