Thursday, November 30, 2023

Man urinates on woman passenger onboard New York-Delhi flight

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An inebriated guy on an Air India US trip urinated on a senior citizen woman co-passenger sat in a business class seat. The airline has been asked to provide a report on the event to the country’s aviation authority, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).  “We are seeking a report from the Airline and shall take action against those found negligent,” the DGCA said on Wednesday.

A written complaint, by the woman passenger in her 70s, stated that her male co-passenger was in a fully inebriated state and had walked up to her seat, unzipped his pants and relieved himself. He also exposed his private parts to her.

Air India has filed a police report in connection with the incident, which occurred on November 26 on the journey from John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York to Delhi.

Speaking to ANI, an Air India official said, “Air India has lodged a police complaint regarding the incident which took place on November 26 when the flight was on its way from JFK to Delhi.”

In the aftermath of this incident, Air India formed an internal committee that recommended that the male passenger be placed on a “no-fly list,” the official said.

The matter has been sent for investigation to a government-appointed committee and a decision is awaited concerning the matter.

Delhi Police has said that a FIR will be filed under the Indian Penal Code 354 (a) molestation and can also add section 506 criminal intimidation and IPC 290.

In her letter to the Chairman of the Board of Tata and Sons, N Chandrasekaran, the woman passenger said called the flight experience extremely traumatic and expressed deep disappointment over the incident that took place in business class section of the flight.

In her letter the woman said that the appalling incident took place shortly after lunch was served and the lights were switched off, as she was getting ready to sleep.

Within minutes, an inebriated male walked to her seat and unzipped his pants, relieved himself, and continued to expose his private parts until another passenger asked him to return to his seat.

“I am writing to express my deep disappointment regarding the appalling incident that occurred during my business class trip on flight AI102 (commencing in NY, JFK yesterday 26th November at 12.30 pm, and arriving this afternoon in New Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport at approximately 1.30 pm). This has been the most traumatic flight that I have ever experienced. During the course of the flight, shortly after lunch was served and the lights were switched off, I was getting ready to sleep, and another passenger walked to my seat completely inebriated. He unzipped his pants, relieved himself, and continued to expose me to his private parts. The passenger sitting next to me asked him to return to his seat. He did not respond immediately, but after a few moments left the area,” the letter read.

The woman passenger, in the letter, also highlighted that when asked for a change of seat, the airline refused and informed there were no seats available. She also complained of being alloted a small seat used by the airline staff, by one of the senior stewardesses.

The woman passenger was later given steward’s seat where she sat for the remaining journey of about 5 hours.

“I subsequently learned from a fellow passenger that several seats were available in First Class and he suggested to the crew that I be moved into one of those rather than being forced to sit in a soiled seat. Clearly, the crew did not feel that taking care of a distressed passenger was a priority]. At the end of the flight, the staff told me they would get me a wheelchair to ensure that I clear customs as early as possible. However, the wheelchair deposited me at a waiting area, where I waited for 30 minutes, and nobody came to get me. I finally had to clear customs on my own and collected the luggage by myself – all in Air India pyjamas and socks,” the complaint letter added as the female passenger called the Air India crew deeply unprofessional.

In the letter, the woman passenger stated that the crew was not proactive in managing a very sensitive and traumatic situation and she had to advocate for herself throughout, waiting for long periods of time to get a response.

“I am particularly distressed that the Airline made no attempt to ensure my safety or comfort during this incident. Given your reputation for excellence in other aspects of your business, I hope that you will take appropriate steps to ensure that this will never be repeated,” she said.

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