With Air India facing the ire of Union Urban Development Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday, as he missed an important engagement due to an inordinate flight delay, the national airline has ordered an enquiry into the matter and offered an explanation behind the delay as well.
“We deeply regret the inconvenience caused due to flight delay. The pilot was stuck in traffic jam. Enquiry has been ordered,” Air India said in a statement.
Naidu said he missed an “important meeting” scheduled to be held in Hyderabad after Air India’s pilot failed to show up even after 30 minutes of the scheduled time of departure. Sources said Naidu was going to Hyderabad to attend a meeting on the ‘Swachh Bharat’ campaign.
It’s rare to see a minister slamming state-run enterprises in public, and just as we were wondering how Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju would react to this, prompt came his tweet.
“Service disruptions are unacceptable and have to be eliminated. Have asked AI to enquire and take action on priority,” Gajapathi Raju tweeted.
The AI 544 flight was scheduled to depart at 1.15 p.m. from the Delhi airport. He returned home after the pilot didn’t report by 1.45 p.m.
“Air India should explain how such things are happening. Transparency and accountability are the need of the hour. Hope Air India understands that we are in the age of competition. Missed an important appointment,” Naidu said in a series of ‘tweets.’
However, the airline added in its statement that Air India has improved its ‘on time performance’ by over 10 per cent in the last few months. (ANI)
“Cognizance taken, CMD @airindia to enquire into the incident. Thanks for the feedback,” said Raju’s deputy Mahesh Sharma.