Air India will begin to reserve seats for woman on its domestic flights from January 18, ANI reported. The reservation will not cost passengers an additional fee.
“We will be reserving the third row – six seats – in the economy class of aircraft for female passengers travelling alone,” said Air India General Manager (Revenue Management) Meenakshi Malik told The Hindu. “We feel, as the national carrier, it is our responsibility to enhance comfort level for female passengers.”
The move is in line with other modes of transport in India – buses and metros have seats meant specifically for women, while special berths and coaches are allotted to them in local and long-distance trains.
The decision to reserve seats for women comes less than a month after an Indian man was produced before a court in New Jersey, United States, for groping a sleeping woman on an Air India flight headed to Newark from Mumbai. Ganesh Parkar had apologised for the “moment’s stupidity” and was granted bail after he furnished a bond of $50,000 (approximately Rs 33.9 lakh).