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Air IndiaAn elderly female passenger sitting in business class was urinated on by a drunken male passenger on a recent flight from New York to Delhi and he walked away without any punishment.

The woman in her seventies alerted the crew after the man also exposed himself, but they did not apprehend the passenger who walked from the flight scot-free. The woman sent a letter to N Chandrasekaran, Chairman of the Tata Group that controls,  Air India.

The Chairman instigated an investigation. “The crew was not proactive in managing a very sensitive and traumatic situation and I had to argue for myself throughout, waiting for long periods to get a response from the crew. I am distressed that the airline made no attempt to ensure my safety and comfort during the incident”, the woman said in the letter.

The incident took place after the cabin lights were dimmed following a meal.  The woman claimed her clothes, bag and shoes were soaked in urine and the crew gave her a set of pyjamas and slippers and told her to return to her original seat.  Several first-class seats were available, she said but she had to initially travel in a crew seat.

Air India Business Class

Air India Business Class

The woman claims after lunch the lights were switched off a male passenger walked to his seat completely inebriated, unzipped his pants and relieved himself and continue to expose his private parts the letter said. A fellow passenger told the man to leave and when he walked away the woman immediately notified the cabin crew.

A stewardess followed her to the seat, verified it smelt of urine and sprayed disinfectant on her bag and shoes. After the woman cleaned herself in the washroom, the crew gave her pyjamas and disposable slippers to change into.  She was then given the narrow crew seat where she sat for an hour and was then sent back to her original seat although the staff had put sheets on top the area was still reeking of urine.

The Times of India newspaper is supporting the woman saying the offender should not only be penalised but put on the no-fly list. That he was allowed to walk away after displaying such obnoxious behaviour reflects extremely unfavourably on the crew. Such dereliction of duty only ends up encouraging bad behaviour, the paper said.

Drunkenness would never happen in Ahmedabad as the Gujarat region of India has a strict rule banning all alcohol.


Written by John Savage in Ahmedabad India