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IndiGo offloads 4 teenagers from Patna-Delhi flight for ‘erratic’ behaviour

The Central Industrial Security Force which guards airports, released the four youngsters after screening their luggage and running a background check.

patna Updated: Nov 18, 2017 08:28 IST
Ruchir Kumar
Ruchir Kumar
Hindustan Times, Patna
IndiGo,Patna-Delhi flight,Kashmiri passengers
Indigo has been in the news recently over the assault on a passenger by its ground crew at Delhi airport.(HT file photo)

IndiGo offloaded four Kashmiri youths, reportedly for the erratic behaviour of a teenager among them from a Delhi-bound flight Thursday evening.

Those offloaded from the Patna-Delhi IndiGo flight (6E-6325) were identified as Mukhtar Ahmed Gani, his elder brother Javed Ahmed Gani and friends Md Munib Wali and Haroon Rashid. They were released later in the evening after preliminary screening.

The CISF, responsible for airport security, screened their baggage for explosives and did a background check on all the youths before releasing them.

The four young men were offloaded after some passengers complained about their erratic behaviour. A passenger, requesting anonymity said he initially saw the youths squabbling in the security hold area, trying to coax a reluctant Mukhtar to board the flight.

“I later heard the youth say that he will go and sit in the cockpit of the aircraft. His behaviour was erratic. It was then that I alerted the airline staff, who immediately offloaded all the four youths,” he said.

Mukhtar, 16, was earlier turned out of the 11, Bihar Batallion, NCC National Integration Camp, which he came to attend in Patna. The camp which began on November 8 is scheduled to run till November18.

Read more: IndiGo was late in reporting manhandling of passenger: Probe report

Sources said the commanding officer of the camp had reportedly found the youth behaving in an erratic manner on November 14. He immediately contacted Mukhtar’s family in Jammu and asked them to take him back. His brother Javed, along with his two friends Md Munib and Haroon Rashid, studying in Panjab University, had come to take back Mukhtar when IndiGo offloaded them.

NCC commanding officer Col. Dharmendra refused to talk to HT over phone about the incident involving Mukhtar.

Security agencies, however, ruled out any terror angle. They said the youth was depressed and in unsound mental condition. He was blabbering consistently, prompting the airlines to declare him “unfit to fly”.

Efforts to contact the CISF proved futile.

In a statement on Friday, IndiGo acknowledged the incident but said passenger’s safety was not compromised. It did not mention anything about a passenger alerting the airline staff.

“An IndiGo passenger Mr Mukhtar Ahmad (accompanied by 3 family members) who was scheduled to travel to Delhi from Patna was offloaded on grounds of unusual behaviour, yesterday (Nov 16). Mr Mukhtar Ahmad’s brother informed the staff on board about his behaviour and attributed it to some disorder. Empathising with Mr Ahmad’s state, the staff explained the safety protocols to Mr Ahmad’s brother and asked them to deplane and cooperate with the staff. CISF was immediately informed about the situation, and all four passengers were probed. During the probe, CISF found that Mr. Ahmad was in Bihar for the NCC training and even during his training he had displayed some unusual behaviour.

“Mr Mukhtar Ahmad’s brother regretted this behaviour to the concerned authorities. Our staff was with the CISF and the family throughout.

“At no point, safety of the passengers was compromised,” the IndiGo statement said.

First Published: Nov 17, 2017 11:13 IST