Monday, October 02, 2006

Harried at Heathrow, say passengers

Ahmedabad: Passengers who were on board an Air India London-Mumbai-Ahmedabad flight that was delayed by more than 20 hours on Friday night at London’s Heathrow Airport claim they were misguided, badly treated and hurt by Air India authorities’ insensitivity.
One of the harried passengers, Hardik Desai from Kankaria area in Ahmedabad, said, ‘‘Our flight was scheduled at around 9.45 pm on September 29. But after reaching Heathrow Airport, we were given a leaflet by airline authorities stating that the flight has been delayed due to technical reason and will depart at 7.45 am, the next day. They gave us accommodation at Hotel Radisson and asked us to be ready in the morning at 6.’’
‘‘At the hotel, we came to know that the flight has been further delayed by five hours. However, nobody from AI informed us and we were taken to the airport,’’ Desai added.
“We were stranded at the airport till 12.30 and later told to board the plane,” he added.
Desai said, ‘‘When after over four hours of anxious wait, one of us called up the police who entered the plane. After hearing us out, a police officer asked the plane crew to sort out the problem in 20 minutes and take off or else he would ask all passengers to leave the plane. Following this, the ‘technical reason’ which the AI authorities were not able to solve for over four hours got sorted out within 20 minutes and the plane took off at around 6 pm,’’ he said.
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