IndiGo airlines has banned nine mediapersons from availing its services for a period of 15 days, for 'unruly behaviour', after they were seen on camera violating safety norms on board a flight, to catch a glimpse of Bollywood actor Kangana Ranaut in September. At the time, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) had sought a report from the domestic airline. According to reports, an internal committee was formed to probe the incident, and as per its findings that were submitted, the nine mediapersons have been barred from flying, between October 15 and October 30.
The incident took place on September 9, when the actor returned to Mumbai from Chandigarh, amid a confrontation with the Maharashtra government over the demolition of a part of her office premises in Mumbai. The mediapersons who were present in the flight include those from Republic TV, Times Now, India Today and News24.
A video of the incident showed mediapersons recording their stories, despite the flight crew's repeated announcement that filming inside the aircraft was strictly prohibited. The DGCA also noted that none of the mediapersons followed the physical distancing guidelines in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We have seen some videos wherein mediapersons are standing too close to each other in the 6E264 flight on Wednesday. It seems to be a violation of safety and social distancing protocols. We have asked IndiGo to submit a report on this incident,” a DGCA official told PTI at the time. The regulator had also asked the airline to take action against those who were found guilty of violating guidelines.
IndiGo is touted to be India's largest airline. The DGCA on Sunday said that it had approved 6,006 weekly domestic flights of IndiGo for this year's winter schedule. SpiceJet and GoAir have got 1,957 weekly domestic flights and 1,203 weekly domestic flights approved, the regulator said.
With IANS and PTI inputs