Saturday, 6 May 2017

Ravindra Gaikwad demands rules to check misbehaviour by airline staff

PUNE: Reacting to the aviation ministry's draft rules to check unruly behaviour by passengers on flights, Ravindra Gaikwad, Shiv Sena MP from Osmanabad, on Friday said similar regulations must be framed to deal with airlines' crew members who tend to misbehave with flyers.

Angry at being given an economy class seat in an Air India, which did not have business class, Gaikwad had beaten an airline staffer with his slippers after flying from Pune to Delhi on March 23.

"All these things started with the incident involving me. We as passengers should realise that we shouldn't misbehave with airline authorities. We cannot misbehave with air hostesses or crew members and if we do, action should be taken. But passengers don't travel in flights to pick up fights. There should be similar laws for airline officials who misbehave with passengers," Gaikwad said. The MP also said Air India should be privatised to bring improvements.

As per the draft rules, any unruly behaviour by passengers on a flight or with the ground staff could result in a flying ban for three months to a lifetime from June 30 onwards.

An official at the Lohegaon airport said, "There passengers coming drunk got late-night or early-morning flights. They create a scene over seats or information. There are high-profile passengers who seek special attention. Then, there are flyers who arrive with extra luggage than what is permissible just before closing of the gates and try to get take advantage of the pressure."

Aviation expert and analyst said there should be fair play. "The government must ensure that a mechanism is in place to ascertain whether such unruly behaviour was provoked due to shortcomings on the part of airline staff," he said. 

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