Air India cabin crew feel its not safe flying Ravindra Gaikwad after his fiasco

Air India cabin crew feel its not safe flying Ravindra Gaikwad after his fiasco

NEW DELHI, April07: Air India’s Cabin Crew Association (AICCA) has said that it will be a ‘shame’ if Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad is allowed to resume flying “without a rap on the knuckles” for his act of beating up a 60-year-old staffer and threatening to throw him off a plane at Delhi Airport last month.

“We Do NOT wish to be flying such a person….It would also crush the morale of all employees,” the association said in a letter to AI chairman late on Thursday night.

We as cabin crew must only point out that Ravindra Gaikwad is and will continue to be a risk to flight safety, flight operations and to cabin crew safety on board, and hence Government must think long and hard about letting him back on. In fact, unless he tenders an unconditional apology to AI employees, and undertakes in writing to abide by the Chicago and Tokyo Conventions & Rules of the Air and follow all cabin safety and public behaviour norms, we must not let him on board,” the union says. AI pilots have earlier said they will not fly Gaikwad unless he apologises.

Expressing concern that AI will be “forced to accept him back on flight(s)”, AICCA says: “We find it our bounden duty to point out that the blatantly criminal actions of the MP have not only been in poor taste, but are criminal acts of violence. For either the (aviation) ministry or Parliament to allow such a person to get away without even a rap on the knuckles or even forcing an apology to all Air-Indians and indeed all Indians, would be a crying shame and would reflect very sadly on… workers and civilised humans.”

 “It was sadder to see parochial party-based support for this dreadful behaviour by some respected senior MPs, whom we have known since long, and who were once associated with Air India and its unions, try and pressure the hon’ble minister (Ashok Gajapathi Raju) in Parliament,” the union says, referring to what happened in Lok Sabha on Thursday with Shiv Sena MPs and ministers gheraoing and heckling a gentleman like Raju who had to be escorted to the safety of his chamber.
Gaikwad has expressed regret over the incident in a letter to Raju and has asked to be allowed to fly again. Private airlines – IndiGo, Jet, SpiceJet, GoAir, Vistara and AirAsia – are waiting for AI to decide on the issue and then they will act on a cue.
The government is not deciding in a hurry as tempers are running high.