250 passengers stranded at Mumbai airport for 7 hours as AI delays flight to Ahmedabad

250 passengers stranded at Mumbai airport for 7 hours as AI delays flight to Ahmedabad
The passengers were finally flown to Ahmedabad after a 7 hour delay (Picture Courtesy: Satish Mudaliar)

Over 250 passengers were left stranded at the Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport during the wee hours of Saturday after a Mumbai-Ahmedabad Air India flight was delayed for over 7 hours.

The Mumbai-Ahmedabad flight AI 031 was scheduled to depart at 1:30 am today. Around 270 passengers were booked on the flight.

However, the airline announced the flight’s delay at the last minute, when most of the passengers had arrived at the airport and cleared the security checks.

The passengers alleged that the airline treated them unfairly and made them wait without offering food or accommodation. Later, many of them staged a protest at exit gate number 47, while some took to social media to share their angst.

An airport official said some passengers created a ruckus and did not allow the airline staff to discharge their duties.

“The flight was first delayed by one hour. Then the carrier further delayed it as there was no pilot available to operate the aircraft. When it did not take off till early morning, the agitated passengers created ruckus in the boarding area and tried to obstruct staff members handling other flights,” the official told PTI.

According to sources, the flight to Ahmedabad was a Dreamliner, which could only be flown by a handful specially trained pilots. The airline was caught in a dilemma after the pilot allegedly failed to report on duty, forcing it to delay the flight.

The passengers were finally flown to Ahmedabad on a flight which departed around 8:30 am today.

An official response from the carrier about the incident is awaited.

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