international politics

Spain asks its top court to block Catalan leader Puigdemont’s bid to become regional president again

Carles Puigdemont, who has fled to Belgium, faces arrest in Spain for rebellion, sedition and misuse of public funds.

The Spanish government on Friday asked the country’s Constitutional Court to block Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont’s bid to become the region’s president again, Reuters reported. Puigdemont fled to Belgium in October after declaring Catalonia’s independence from Spain.

Puigdemont faces arrest in Spain for rebellion, sedition and misuse of public funds to break Catalonia from Spain. “A person who is wanted in national territory for such serious crimes cannot try to be sworn in as head of the Catalan government, without having faced up to his responsibilities with the law,” Spanish Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Saenz de Santamaria said according to AFP.

“The state must use every tool made available by the laws and the constitution to make sure that a fugitive cannot be sworn in and become the head of the regional government,” the deputy prime minister added.

Separatist parties won most of the seats in Catalonia’s regional parliamentary elections earlier in January. Roger Torrent, the newly elected speaker of the Catalan Parliament, appointed Puigdemont as the sole candidate for regional leader on January 22. The Catalan Parliament is set to vote on January 30 on Puigdemont’s candidature.

Reacting to the government’s appeal to the Constitutional Court on Friday, Puigdemont tweeted, “[Spain is] isolated physically, legally and democratically. They are panicking in the face of the will of the people.”

Support our journalism by paying for Scroll+ here. We welcome your comments at
Sponsored Content BY 

Bringing the glamour back to flying while keeping it affordable

The pleasure of air travel is back, courtesy of an airline in India.

Before dinner, fashionable women would retire to the powder room and suited-up men would indulge in hors d’oeuvres, surrounded by plush upholstery. A gourmet meal would soon follow, served in fine tableware. Flying, back in the day, was like an upscale party 35,000 feet up in the air.

The glamour of flying has been chronicled in Keith Lovegrove’s book titled ‘Airline: Style at 30,000 feet’. In his book, Lovegrove talks about how the mid-50s and 60s were a “fabulously glamorous time to fly in commercial airlines”. Back then, flying was reserved for the privileged and the luxuries played an important role in making travelling by air an exclusive experience.

Fast forward to the present day, where flying has become just another mode of transportation. In Mumbai, every 65 seconds an aircraft lands or takes off at the airport. The condition of today’s air travel is a cumulative result of the growth in the volume of fliers, the accessibility of buying an air ticket and the number of airlines in the industry/market.

Having relegated the romance of flying to the past, air travel today is close to hectic and borderline chaotic thanks to busy airports, packed flights with no leg room and unsatisfactory meals. With the skies dominated by frequent fliers and the experience having turned merely transactional and mundane, is it time to bid goodbye to whatever’s enjoyable in air travel?

With increased resources and better technology, one airline is proving that flying in today’s scenario can be a refreshing, enjoyable and affordable experience at the same time. Vistara offers India’s first and only experience of a three-cabin configuration. At a nominal premium, Vistara’s Premium Economy is also redefining the experience of flying with a host of features such as an exclusive cabin, 20% extra legroom, 4.5-inch recline, dedicated check-in counter and baggage delivery on priority. The best in class inflight dining offers a range of regional dishes, while also incorporating global culinary trends. Other industry-first features include Starbucks coffee on board and special assistance to solo women travellers, including preferred seating.

Vistara’s attempts to reduce the gap between affordability and luxury can also be experienced in the economy class with an above average seat pitch, complimentary selection of food and beverages and a choice of leading newspapers and publications along with an inflight magazine. Hospitality aboard Vistara is, moreover, reminiscent of Singapore Airlines’ famed service with a seal of Tata’s trust, thanks to its cabin crew trained to similarly high standards.

The era of style aboard a ‘flying boat’ seems long gone. However, airlines like Vistara are bringing back the allure of air travel. Continuing their campaign with Deepika Padukone as brand ambassador, the new video delivers a bolder and a more confident version of the same message - making flying feel new again. Watch the new Vistara video below. For your next trip, rekindle the joy of flying and book your tickets here.


This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Vistara and not by the Scroll editorial team.