IndiGo offloads passenger for his 'unruly' behaviour over mosquitoes

IndiGo Airlines Reuters file

IndiGo Airlines Reuters file

IndiGo caught flack for allegedly removing a doctor from a flight because he was complaining about mosquitoes on the plane, New Indian Express reported. It alleged that the passenger even tried to instigate other passengers to damage the aircraft.

Just days before that, a video of an October incident, in which a passenger is seen manhandled by its staff at Delhi airport, was widely shared on social media.

IndiGo, however, said in a statement that Dr Saurabh Rai had used threatening language, while speaking with the flight attendants and was offloaded for his unruly behaviour.

In a case that will refresh everyone's memories of manhandling a passenger, IndiGo Airlines offloaded a passenger on April 9 at about 6 a.m. from its flight from Lucknow to Bengaluru after he complained about mosquitoes inside the aircraft.

Claiming that the crew members held him by his collar before offloading him over his complaint of mosquitoes, Saurabh said, "I heard the crew saying 'if you have a problem with mosquitoes then why don't you leave India?" adding, "After they deboarded me, they told I can fly only if I tender an apology". Minister of Civil Aviation and Commerce and Industry Suresh Prabhu has, meanwhile, ordered a probe into the incident.

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This time, the airline has allegedly deplaned a flyer from its flight no. 6E 541 at Lucknow Airport and did not even allow him to use any bus or auto service to reach the airport lounge. "Before cabin crew could address his concerns he became aggressive & used threatening language", IndiGo said in its statement. I was physically manhandled, pushed and pulled and I said don't manhandle me, I'm not a terrorist.

In a statement on Monday, it said, "Prior to take-off, Rai, expressed concerns regarding mosquitoes on board. Hence, keeping in mind applicable safety protocols, the crew apprised the pilot-in-command, who made a decision to offload Mr Rai from the flight", Indigo said in the statement.

In 2016, swarms of on board mosquitoes caused two flight delays, one for Air India and the other for Jet Airways, at Mumbai International Airport. However, the safety and security of our passengers as well as colleagues is of primary concern.

The plane's captain attempted to calm passengers, but the situation kept escalating, IndiGo said in a statement. "Further, we would like to mention here that the National Green Tribunal (NGT) has prohibited disinfectant fumigation in aircraft while passengers are onboard", it noted.

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