• Friday, September 22, 2023


Passenger assaults crew, forces London-bound flight to return to Delhi

Jaskirat Singh, 25, verbally abused the crew members and hit one of them on the neck causing her to fall on the floor

Representational image: iStock

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

AN UNRULY passenger on board an Air India Delhi-London flight created a ruckus mid-air and forced the plane to return to the Indian capital on Monday (10). He also tried to open the aircraft’s door and assaulted two crew members as they tried to stop him, Delhi police said.

Jaskirat Singh, 25, verbally abused the crew members and hit one of them on the neck causing her to fall on the floor. He then pulled her by the hair and hit another crew member on her face, the police said.

Singh had to be restrained with the help of other crew members and passengers, and the aircraft was brought back to Delhi about three hours after its departure. He was deboarded and subsequently detained by police, a police official said.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (Airport) Devesh Kumar Mahla said Singh, who studied till Class 12, was asked why he acted the way he did, to which he replied, “I was upset”.

Jaskirat Singh, who hails from Punjab’s Kapurthala, and his father were going abroad for the first time. After landing in London, they had plans to fly to Canada to visit Singh’s sister, police said.

Mahla said police have received a complaint and detained Jaskirat Singh, and the matter is being investigated.

According to police officials, Air India flight AI-111 took off from Delhi to London at 6:35 hours local time (1:05 hours GMT). After about an hour, Singh was spotted trying to open an aircraft door.

A crew member, along with a colleague, tried to stop him but he threatened to hit them and used “unparliamentary language”, the police officials said, citing the complaint received from a cabin supervisor of the airline.

He suddenly turned violent and attacked both the crew members, according to the complaint.

Medical examinations of the complainant and the other crew member were carried out at the Medanta Medical Centre, Indira Gandhi International Airport, police said.

The accused will also undergo a medical examination to ascertain if he was under the influence of alcohol, Mahla added.

According to Air India, the passenger was handed over to the security personnel after the flight landed at the Delhi airport.

“Not heeding to verbal and written warnings, the passenger continued with unruly behaviour, including causing physical harm to two cabin crew members,” the airline said in a statement.


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