Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad decided to travel by road to Delhi after Air India twice cancelled his tickets from Mumbai on Wednesday. The state carrier was one of six airlines that banned Gaikwad for his slipper assault on an Air India duty manager last week.
The 56-year-old Osmanabad MP is coming to Delhi to attend the ongoing Parliament session.
“Gaikwad is reaching Delhi by car today but will not attend the day’s proceedings of the Lok Sabha,” said sources close to him. But he will attend tomorrow’s session if his party leadership allows him to do so, the sources added.
On Wednesday, Gaikwad, who had an open ticket with Air India, had booked a morning flight from Mumbai to Delhi through the call centre. When the airline realised who the passenger was, they cancelled the ticket. Gaikwad then booked another ticket, this time from Hyderabad to Delhi. However, again when the airline learnt who the passenger was the ticket was cancelled.
Gaikwad is accused of abusing and assaulting Air India manager R Sukumar with his slippers after being denied business class on a Pune-New Delhi Air India flight last week.
The MP was then banned by Air India and five private airlines from flying as he refused to apologise for the incident that triggered nationwide outrage.
There were reports on Tuesday that Gaikwad had taken a Rajdhani from Mumbai Central railway station after a TV channel showed the reservation chart with his name pasted on coach A-3. However, the sources said he decided to travel by car to Delhi.
“He is not in Maharashtra at present and is expected to reach Delhi anytime today,” they said.