Arnab’s heckling: SpiceJet, GoAir ban Kunal Kamra; AirAsia India and Vistara ‘reviewing’ matter

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Updated: Jan 29, 2020 3:24 PM

SpiceJet and GoAir became the third and fourth airlines, respectively, to take action against Kamra.

Arnab heckling incident, Arnab Goswami, SpiceJet, IndiGo, Air India, Kunal Kamra, Hardeep Singh Puri, DGCA, AirAsia IndiaSpiceJet is the third airline to take action against Kamra. (IE photo)

 

After IndiGo and Air India, SpiceJet and GoAir on Wednesday suspended stand-up comedian Kunal Kamra from flying with them for allegedly heckling journalist Arnab Goswami aboard an IndiGo Mumbai-Lucknow flight.

AirAsia India spokesperson told PTI on Wednesday that the airline’s internal committee is reviewing the matter and it will take action as per due process. In a similar statement, Vistara had said on Tuesday that it will “review and follow due process in such cases”.

SpiceJet and GoAir became the third and fourth airlines, respectively, to take action against Kamra. While IndiGo suspended Kamra from flying with it for a period of six months on Tuesday itself, Air India banned him until further notice.

After IndiGo announced its decision to ban Kamra, Aviation Minister Hardeep Singh Puri stated on Tuesday that he had taken note of the incident and “advised” other airlines in India to impose similar restrictions on Kamra, stating “offensive behaviour designed to provoke & create disturbance inside an aircraft is absolutely unacceptable & endangers safety of air travellers”.

Kamra allegedly heckled Goswami, the editor of Republic TV, on IndiGo’s Mumbai-Lucknow (6E5317) flight on Tuesday. In a video clip posted by Kamra on his Twitter handle on Tuesday, he is seen asking Goswami if he is a “coward or a journalist”. While Goswami can be seen sitting in the plane and watching something on his laptop with his earphones plugged in, Kamra is heard as telling him, “Viewers want to know if Arnab today is a coward or a nationalist. Arnab, this is for national interest. I am part of the tukde-tukde narrative. You should deflate me. You should take the enemy of the states down. You should make sure that the country is in safe hands of Narendra Modi.”

In a statement, AirAsia India spokesperson told PTI,”Our internal committee is reviewing this case and a decision will be taken soon. We will take action as per due processes.” On Wednesday morning, SpiceJet said on Twitter,”SpiceJet has decided to suspend Mr. Kunal Kamra from flying with the airline till further notice.” In the afternoon, GoAir said it is “suspending Kunal Kamra from flying with the airline till further notice.”

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