Indian MP Gets Flight Ban After Battering Employee With Shoe

Open Jaw

Ravindra Gaikwad

Indian airlines plan to establish a 'no-fly' blacklist for unruly passengers following an Indian MP's recent violent meltdown on a flight.

Member of Parliament Ravindra Gaikwad was accused of battering an airline employee with his shoe more than 20 times after he was forced to travel economy class though he had an open business class ticket. The fact that flight was all-economy didn’t mollify the politician.

“I will not apologize. Why should I? It’s not my mistake. They should apologize first then (we) will see. I will go to Pune this (Friday) evening in a flight of the same airline. I have booked the ticket. I am a passenger,” Gaikwad said.

After refusing to leave the plane on landing in New Delhi, Gaikwad repeatedly struck a 60-year-old shift manager sent to calm him down. 

"When I told him what he was asking for wasn't possible, he became abusive and started using foul language," the shift manager told Asian News International. "God save our country if this is the culture and behaviour of our MPs."

AI cancelled Gaikwad's return ticket and filed a criminal complaint with police, assuring all staff they would get full support from the company in cases of abusive behaviour. The Osmanabad MP was later charged with two counts of assault and delaying a scheduled flight.

Five more Indian airlines have also banned Gaikwad from flying with them, forcing him to return to Mumbai by train.

Air India is seeking support from the Federation of Indian Airlines, which includes members IndiGo, Jet Airways, SpiceJet and Go Air, to automatically ground passengers involved in air rage incidents.

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