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Civil Aviation

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Civil Aviation
#95
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--> <b>Mid-air scuffle: AI suspends pilot, purser; to form probe panel</b>
pioneer.com
PTI | New Delhi
<b>Air India on Tuesday suspended a senior pilot and a flight purser of a Delhi-bound international flight after an inquiry found them guilty of playing a major role in the mid-air scuffle that led an air hostess to file a molestation case against two pilots</b>.

After examining a report of its internal enquiry, the airline management also decided to set up a committee to probe the molestation charge while keeping the complainant,<b> air hostess Komal Singh, grounded till the probe was over</b>.

<b>Those suspended were Commander Ranbir Arora and Flight Purser Amit Khanna,</b> an airline spokesman said, adding that <b>co-pilot Aditya Chopra would continue to remain de-rostered till the inquiry ends.</b> Chargesheets will also be issued against the two suspended employees.

Meanwhile, the city police, which lodged a case following Komal's complaint, has recorded statements of some "concerned persons" but did not identify them. Komal had charged the pilot and co-pilot with molestation and assault.

Delhi Police chief Y S Dadwal said the department has also asked the airline to provide the list of passengers travelling in the business class of flight IC-884 from Sharjah to Delhi via Lucknow on October three.

By virtue of being seated in the front of the aircraft and near the cockpit, these passengers could act as crucial eye-witnesses to the scuffle and throw light on the incident, a senior police official said.

The three-member Air India probe panel found that Arora and Khanna had played "greater role" in the incident.

<b>While the "attitude" of flight purser Khanna led to the altercation that later blew up into a scuffle, the behaviour of flight commander Arora, who pushed the air hostess out of the cockpit, was "objectionable", the panel concluded</b>.

The inquiry also concluded that at no point of time did the two pilots leave the cockpit unmanned endangering flight safety.

The findings of the departmental inquiry, set up now, will determine the extent of involvement and <b>culpability of Arora and Khanna and the quantum of punishment to be awarded to them will be decided accordingly.</b>

Reacting to the suspension of the senior pilot, Indian Commercial Pilots Association President Shailendra Singh said "we have full faith in the management. Whatever they have decided is as per the preliminary inquiry" but added that they reserved the right to appeal after the final outcome.

He told reporters that separate inquiries were being conducted by the airline, the police and the DGCA. "Let these be completed, then only we will decide, whether to appeal or what should be done," he said.

Asserting that whoever was found guilty should be punished, Singh said "if there was some problem, there is a proper place to resolve it. Aircraft certainly is not the right place to sort out your issues. The issues should have been settled amicably."

The ICPA chief tried to maintain a balance between the pilots and the cabin crew and said "the whole issue has made a mockery of aviation and created an element of distrust among us.

<b>"Cabin crew is there not just to serve tea and coffee, they have the responsibility of maintaining safety of the aircraft too," he said.

Singh also appealed to Komal "not to come under any pressure".</b>

<b>"If she has been misguided then she should take the correct step"</b>, he said adding that he had seen "bruises" on the face of the co-pilot<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
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Civil Aviation - by Guest - 11-19-2005, 02:57 AM
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Civil Aviation - by agnivayu - 11-24-2005, 05:48 AM
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