Did Air India (AI) violate air safety norms during the recently concluded rescue operations from war-ravaged Yemen?
AI, which played a major role in evacuating over 4,000 Indian nationals from Yemen, is said to have packed in many more passengers on its flights than the aircraft capacity permitted.
“Air India crew wanted to leave no on behind (sic). Took about 240 on a plane with capacity of 182. But some still stranded in Sanaa. #Yemen,” BBC’s Cairo correspondent Orla Guerin tweeted on April 8.
“On board a packed Air India flight evacuating civilians from Sanaa. Some were sitting 6 to a row #Yemen,” she said in another tweet. Guerin also posted pictures from inside a rescue flight.
Sources said the aviation safety regulator, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), was looking into the issue. While DGCA officials did not respond to calls and messages from HT, an AI spokesperson said the ministry of external affairs (MEA) should be contacted.
However, MEA officials refused to comment on the issue saying AI was the authority taking decision on all such issues.