A day after Union minister M Venkaiah Naidu lashed out at Air India (AI) for a delayed flight, the national carrier on Wednesday clarified that the pilot of Naidu’s flight was late in reaching the airport because of waterlogging and traffic congestion in Gurgaon.
Naidu on Tuesday had launched a twitter tirade against AI, stating that the delay in the flight had resulted in him missing an “important appointment” in Hyderabad. Naidu’s flight from Delhi was delayed by over an hour as the pilot was late in reaching the airport.
The airlines claimed that an internal inquiry revealed that the car that had been assigned to pick up the pilot got stuck in a traffic jam because of which it took the driver over two hours to complete a 25-minute journey. The report states that the pilot eventually had to come to the airport on his own. Air India analysed the GPS data of the vehicle and according to officials found that for 40 minutes the car was stuck at one particular location in a traffic jam.
“As per the statement of the driver, the car reached Ambience Mall at around 10:20 am but waterlogging had resulted in a traffic jam below the Shankar Chowk flyover, an AI official said. The official added that the driver took an alternative route to reach the pilot but that road too was affected by traffic snarls.
AI had the worst on-time performance (OTP) among all the domestic carriers in May. The state-owned airline had the lowest OTP of 74.3% at the four metro airports of Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru and Hyderabad. In April too, AI’s OTP was the lowest at 79.3%.