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India will probe IndiGo’s mistreatment of a disabled child

REUTERS/Vivek Prakash
Bad press.
Published Last updated

India’s largest passenger airline is facing a blowback.

IndiGo’s staffers at Jharkhand’s Ranchi airport allegedly refused to let a disabled child board a flight. Some passengers on the same flight took to social media to share visuals of the incident, which then quickly went viral.

The posts said the IndiGo manager at the airport deemed the child a “flight risk.”

“He also compared his behaviour to a drunk passenger and deemed the child unfit for travel,” one such post said.

Following a furore, the Indian government today assured “appropriate action.”

“There is zero tolerance towards such behaviour. No human being should have to go through this! Investigating the matter by myself, post which appropriate action will be taken,” civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia said on Twitter.

IndiGo has said that its staff was “forced” to make a difficult decision within the guidelines laid out by the directorate general of civil aviation.

“Throughout the check-in and boarding process, our intent of course was to carry the family. However, at the boarding area, the teenager was visibly in panic,” said Ronojoy Dutta, whole-time director and CEO of IndiGo.

The airline said that while providing “courteous and compassionate service” to customers was of paramount importance to it, the airport staff’s move was in line with the safety guidelines.

“Having reviewed all aspects of this incident, we as an organisation are of the view that we made the best possible decision under difficult circumstances,” Dutta said.

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