June 16th, 2017
The Indian Express reports that Telugu Desam Party (TDP) leader JC Diwakar Reddy has been creating a commotion in the Visakhapatnam airport on Thursday morning when he was reportedly denied a boarding pass by the IndiGo airlines.
He was reportedly late for his flight, which was scheduled to depart at 8:10 in the morning for Hyderabad. He arrived 28 minutes before the time of departure. According to aviation regulator norms, check-in counters for all domestic flights are supposed to close 45 minutes before departure.
A video footage shows Reddy, who is also the Lok Sabha MP from Anantapur, Andhra Pradesh, arguing with the airline officials about receiving his boarding pass and later damaging a boarding pass printing machine.
Reddy banned by various airlines
Initially, IndiGo did not want to comment on the incident without probing into the matter. Later, they came up with an announcement that they would ban Reddy from their flights.
Air India supported the move taken by IndiGo, with an AI spokesperson quoted as saying,“The Visakhapatnam incident is a matter of concern. As IndiGo has banned the MP, AI has also barred his travel on our flights.”
Following suit, four major airlines – SpiceJet, Go Air, Jet Airways and Vistara – also banned Reddy.
Reddy is infamous for his rage and misdemeanour. This is not the first time that he was barred from boarding a flight. A similar incident took place in Vijayawada in October 2016 when he had reportedly arrived late at the Gannavaram Airport and missed an Air India flight. He was caught on camera creating a ruckus in the Air India office and damaging furniture.
Government to come up with “national no-fly list”
Reddy is the second lawmaker to be grounded in less than three months: Shiv Sena’s Ravindra Gaikwad, who assaulted an Air India official, was the first.
The Gaikwad incident had prompted the government to come up with a no-fly list to bar abusive passengers. But Mr Reddy said there was no reason for him to apologise. The Minister was later reportedly accommodated on the same flight which got delayed in the process and left after its departure time of 8.10 am on Thursday.
By the end of June, a “national no-fly list” will be unveiled by the Ministry of Aviation. Unruly passengers can be banned from flying for a minimum of three months. The no-fly list, which is still in drafting stages, will classify offences into three categories.
- At Level 1, misdemeanours including physical gestures, verbal harassment and unruly behaviour because of inebriation will attract a minimum ban of three months.
- Level 2 comprises physically abusive behaviour such as pushing, hitting, grabbing, inappropriate touching or sexual harassment which results in a ban of six months.
- Level 3 consists of life-threatening behaviour such as damage to aircraft operating system, physical violence such as choking or murderous assault and attempted breach of flight crew compartment. This will carry a flying ban of two years or more without limit.
If a passenger repeats the same degree of offence he/she will be banned for twice the period of the previous ban.
The Logical Indian community severely condemns such unruly actions by the ministers who tend to misuse their power and position for all the wrong reasons, causing discomfort to the commoners.