Foreign national abuses AI crew member over wine

A foreign national onboard a Mumbai-London flight allegedly turned abusive and manhandled a cabin crew member in an inebriated state after she was denied more alcohol, an Air India official said Wednesday. Screengrab

A foreign national onboard a Mumbai-London flight allegedly turned abusive and manhandled a cabin crew member in an inebriated state after she was denied more alcohol, an Air India official said Wednesday.

The airline filed a police complaint against the woman, who was travelling in business class.

The incident took place on November 10 onboard Air India flight AI-131 to London, the official said.

The passenger already had four quarter bottles of wine. When she asked for more, the cabin crew refused to serve her as she had become completely drunk, an airline source said.

In a video clip recorded by a cabin crew member, she can be heard using expletives several times.

A First Information Report (FIR) was filed against her following a complaint by Air India and she was taken into custody on landing at London's Heathrow airport, the source said.

"As a thumb rule, a passenger can be served 2-3 pegs of hard liquor and another 3-4 glasses of wine. Passengers in business class can get a little more.

"But this passenger already had four quarter bottles of wine and was insisting for more. When denied, she started shouting and abusing the crew members," the source said.

In the video clip, which went viral on social media, the woman can purportedly be heard saying, "I'm working for all your people...for you, an international criminal lawyer. Don't get any money for it, by the way. But you can't give me a .... glass of wine, is that correct?"

The cabin crew informed the flight commander about the unruly behaviour of the passenger and he instructed the crew not to serve her more drinks.

The Civil Aviation Ministry guidelines of September 2017 state that a passenger indulging in unruly behaviour can be barred from flying for a period ranging from three months to lifetime.

Aviation regulator DGCA is supposed to maintain a record of all such blacklisted passengers, and the quantum of punishment is based on the severity of the offence.

The no-fly list is applicable only if the incident takes place inside an aircraft which could adversely affect the safety of the plane and its occupants.

"The airline chairman and managing director called for all the reports after the case was brought to his notice. He is looking at the matter," said the source. 

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Foreign national abuses AI crew member over wine

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