Ranchi: The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has taken action against Indigo Airlines for refusing to board a Specially-abled child at the Birsa Munda Airport in Ranchi. A fine of Rs 5 lakh has been imposed on the flight operator. The DGCA said that extraordinary response is required in special circumstances but the airline staff could not do so.
A statement by the DGCA said that it has been observed that the handling of the special child by the Indigo ground staff was deficient and ended up exacerbating the situation. However, the director of Ranchi Airport expressed his ignorance over this matter. He said that he had been informed about the fine through the media and was unaware of any such steps taken by the DGCA.
The incident had taken place on a Hyderabadbound flight, on May 7, and was brought to light via a Facebook post by a passenger at the airport who was waiting to board another flight. As soon as the video went viral on social media, the DGCA formed a three-member team and initiated a probe. It had also sought a report from the airline company.
IndiGo on May 9 had said that the boy was denied permission to board the flight as he was ‘visibly in panic’. As the boy was prohibited from boarding, his parents also decided not to enter the plane. The company had further claimed that the family boarded the flight the next day and left for their destination.
The DGCA further added in the statement, “In view of this, the competent authority in the DGCA has decided to impose a penalty of Rs 5 lakhs on the airline under the provisions of the relevant Aircraft Rules.”