After man urinates on woman in flight, DGCA says Air India’s handling of incident was unprofessional
The airline had filed a police complaint only after the woman wrote a letter about the incident to the Tata Group’s chairperson.
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation on Thursday said that Air India’s handling of an incident pertaining to a drunken man allegedly urinating on a woman on board was unprofessional, reported NDTV.
The incident had taken place on a Air India flight from New York to New Delhi on November 26. The man had initially walked scot-free as the cabin crew did not apprehend him even after the woman complained about the incident.
It was only after the woman wrote a letter to Tata Group Chairperson Natarajan Chandrasekaran that Air India filed a complaint with the police. The aviation regulator has sought a report on the incident from the airline, the pilot of the flight and the crew within two weeks.
On Friday, the regulatory body said in a statement that it seems that provisions related to handling an unruly passenger on board have not been complied with.
“The conduct of the concerned airline appears to be unprofessional and has led to a systemic failure,” it added.
In her letter, the woman had said the man walked to her seat in the business class section in a drunken state shortly after lunch was served and the lights were switched off.
“He unzipped his pants, relieved himself and continued to expose me to his private parts,” she had said. The woman had also said that the man continued to stand there exposing himself till another passenger asked him to leave.
She had added: “The crew was not proactive in managing a very sensitive and traumatic situation, and I had to advocate for myself throughout, waiting for long periods of time to get a response. I am...distressed that the airline made no attempt to ensure my safety or comfort during this incident.”
Following her letter, the Delhi Police registered a first information report on the airline’s complaint under Indian Penal Code Sections 294 (obscene act in public place), 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) and 510 (misconduct in public by a drunken person) as well as under Aircraft Rules.
Air India had also said that the man has been banned from the airline for 30 days. “If found guilty, action will be taken against the unruly passenger as per regulatory guidelines,” a spokesperson for the airline said.