DGCA sets up team to probe boarding row at Ranchi airport

New Delhi, May 9 (IANS) Taking a stern view of the denial of boarding to a physically challenged boy by IndiGo Airlines at Ranchi airport last week, the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has constituted a three-member team for a fact-finding probe into the incident, officials said on Monday.

Officials aware of this development said that the team will visit Ranchi’s Birsa Munda Airport and also Hyderabad, the place of residence of the concerned family and collect appropriate evidence within one week.

The officials also said that on the basis of the report of this probe team, the DGCA will be taking stern action against the airline.

On May 7, the physically challenged boy and his family were not allowed by the IndiGo airlines staff to board a flight to Hyderabad citing inconvenience to other passengers as the boy seemed to be very panicked.

Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia took cognisance of the matter and said that he would personally look into the matter.

Stating that “there is zero tolerance towards such behaviour”, he, in a tweet on Monday, said: “No human being should have to go through this! Investigating the matter by myself, post which appropriate action will be taken.”

The incident came to light after a video clip of the showdown went viral.

IndiGo said that the child was in a “state of panic” and they could not fly him and his parents until he calmed down. However, reports also suggest that IndiGo’s ground staff implied that the child with special needs was “unfit to fly” and allegedly made inappropriate comparisons to the child as similar to drunk passengers unfit to travel.

“The airline made the family comfortable by providing them with a hotel stay, the family flew on Sunday morning to their destination. IndiGo prides itself on being an inclusive organisation, be it for employees or customers; and over 75K specially-abled passengers fly with IndiGo every month,” IndiGo said in a statement.