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IndiGo, other airlines ban TDP MP over Vizag airport ruckus

16 June 2017

A Telugu Desam Party MP allegedly created ruckus at Visakhapatnam airport on being denied boarding pass for late entry on Thursday, reports said. Normally when MPs and MLAs take a flight, their personal staff collect the boarding pass much earlier and inform the airline about the VIP's scheduled travel. The MP created a ruckus after he was denied a boarding pass by Indigo Airlines.

Besides IndiGo, the TDP MP has been barred from Air India, Jet Airways, SpiceJet and GoAir. He faced a ban on flying that was subsequently relaxed.

Interestingly, Union Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju had been in the VVIP lounge of the airport when the incident occurred. "I had reached the airport 30 minutes before the departure of the flight".

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The MP had reported at the check-in counter 28 minutes before the scheduled departure of the flight against the regulation of 45 minutes.

Reddy arrived late at the airport and demanded a boarding pass after the staff closed the counter as the deadline had ended. According to reports, he was alleged to have barged into the Air India office and damaged furniture.

Sources said that when he reached the counter, the airline staffer informed him that check-in for the flight had closed. The Visakhapatnam airport director, when contacted by NDTV, said the incident was a matter between IndiGo Airline staffers and the lawmaker. The MP was later accommodated on the same flight. "Safety and security of passengers, crew and the aircraft is the top priority and it can not be compromised". "Safety and security of our colleagues and customers is our highest priority", the Indigo said in a statement.

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Late in the evening, a top airline official told PTI IndiGo will not allow Reddy on its flights.

"Perhaps the flight was overbooked", the Minister said.

The incident came as Indian airlines are planning to introduce stiff penalty to ban unruly passengers from flying in the wake of another lawmaker of the western state of Maharashtra's ruling alliance Shiv Sena party Ravindra Gaikwad who beat up a staffer of national carrier Air India.

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IndiGo, other airlines ban TDP MP over Vizag airport ruckus