Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad, who assaulted an Air India ground staff l at Delhi Airport, was on Friday barred from flying by Federation of Indian Airlines (FIA). The MP had assaulted the staff for providing him an economy class seat instead of business class. He had slapped the staff 25 times with slippers.
Gaikwad was traveling from Pune to New Delhi when the scuffle broke out over the sitting arrangement.
According to initial reports, the Federation of Indian Airlines (FIA) had banned the MP from flying, but this was denied by the organization.”Have not banned the MP. We do not have powers to ban anyone.In any case, Air India is not part of FIA,” Director Ujwal Dey said. However, he added that “We are discussing and asking operators also about banning the Shiv Sena MP”.
Unapologetic Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad writes to the Civil Aviation Minister alleging the Air India employee misbehaved with him, complains of ‘poor service. “Yes, I beat him as he misbehaved with me. I hit Air India staffer 25 times” Gaikwad said to the media on Thursday, adding that the staffer “raised his voice” and said “What MP? I will talk to Modi”.
“Do you expect me to hear their abuses quietly? What should have I done? He first misbehaved with me,” Gaikwad told ANI.
“I won’t take abuses from anyone. I am a Shiv Sena MP, not BJP,” he added.
“I will complain about this misbehavior in the Parliament. They can complain whoever they want to, I will give my answer,” he said.
However, a video of the incident showed a stewardess pleading with Gaikwad to stop while he assaults the staffer has surfaced. In the video, the stewardess is heard requesting the MP to stop. The stewardess says “Aap fenk denge toh murder case ho jayega na, sir (If you throw him down, it will be a murder case, sir)”. The MP is heard replying: “Hone do na, bahut cases hai hamare upar (Let it happen, there are many cases against me).”
“The party has sought an explanation from Gaikwad over the incident. The Sena does not condone violence of any kind,” Harshal Pradhan, media adviser to Sena president Uddhav Thackeray concerning the event.
In response to the incident, the Spicejet said it will support a no-fly list to bar unruly flyers who are a safety hazard for not just the crew but even the traveling public. An attack on our employees and crew is an attack on us and we strongly condemn such incidents, said SpiceJet CMD Ajay Singh.
Meanwhile, condemning the act of the MP, Mumbai Congress president Sanjay Nirupam said, Shiv Sena chief should throw this “Gunda” MP out of the party. He says that speaker should also throw him out of the house and questions PM Modi about his silence on this.
Congress leader Shashi Tharoor expressing grief over the incident said that while it is sad that the MP indulged in such a behavior, there is little we can do except perhaps referring it to the ethics committee.