TDP MP Diwakar Reddy moves court, challenges flight ban by 8 domestic airlines

The TDP MP allegedly created a ruckus at the Visakhapatnam airport after he was denied a boarding pass for reporting late for an IndiGo flight to Hyderabad

india Updated: Jul 12, 2017 13:01 IST
Srinivasa Rao Apparasu
Srinivasa Rao Apparasu
Hyderabad, Hindustan Times
Diwakar Reddy,Ravindra Gaikwad,Aviation
In a show of unity, all major domestic airlines barred Diwakar Reddy from taking their flights - similar to action taken by the carriers after the incident involving Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad earlier this year.(File)

The Hyderabad high court on Wednesday admitted a petition filed by Telugu Desam Party legislator from Andhra Pradesh, JC Diwakar Reddy, challenging the flying ban imposed on him by eight domestic airlines for his alleged unruly behaviour with the staff of Indigo Airlines at Visakhapatnam airport last month.

Reddy sought the intervention of the court to declare the ban on his domestic flying as illegal and issue orders to the airlines to allow him to fly in their planes.

The MP, who represents Anantapur parliamentary constituency, entered the cabin of the Indigo Airlines counter on June 16 at Visakhapatnam airport and shouted at the staff after they refused to give him a boarding pass to take the flight to Hyderabad. He came to the airport after the closure of the boarding time and the flight was ready to take off.

Video clippings recorded on the closed circuit television cameras in the airport showed Reddy banging the boarding pass printer and even pushing an airlines employee out of the cabin.

However, Reddy described the incident as very trivial and said it was blown out of proportion and given a wrong colour, in his petition. He said he had reached the airport well within the stipulated time, but the airline’s staff had refused to give him a boarding pass. He added he had not misbehaved with the staff nor had he manhandled anybody.

“Had I behaved with them in an unruly manner, they would have filed a case against me and an FIR would have been registered by now,” he argued.

The MP claimed he was given the boarding pass following the intervention from the ministry of civil aviation.

Stating that at this age he could not think of alternative modes of transport because of his health reasons, Reddy said it was unlawful, arbitrary and infringement on his rights granted by constitution to impose a ban on him without any enquiry, without proving his guilt and without even giving him the notice to explain his case.

“This is against the principles of natural justice and also goes against the guidelines framed by the director general of civil aviation,” he pointed out.

Reddy made the Union ministry of civil aviation, DGCA, Air India, Jet Airways, Vistara Airlines, Indigo, GoAir, Air Asia, Spice Jet, and Turbo Megha Airways as respondents to his plea.

The petition is expected to come up for a hearing later in the day.

First Published: Jul 12, 2017 12:57 IST