No-fly norms to be rolled out in 1st week of July, unruly passengers could face lifetime ban
Minister of State (MoS) for Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha on Tuesday said that a national no-fly list is under consideration and is expected to be rolled out in the first week of July.
The decision comes in the wake of lawmakers creating a ruckus at domestic airports and flights.
Sinha, while addressing the media, said that the cabinet was undergoing an analysis process and that results of the same would be churned out soon. The list will ‘balance the interests of all stakeholders’, he assured.
“The process is underway right now, as we have said many times we are going through an analysis process and those recommendations are in front of the Cabinet right now and the Cabinet will take the process forward. A national no-fly list rules is currently being prepared and will be issued it in first week of July,” said Sinha.
The ministry of civil aviation had last month issued its draft rules for a national no-fly list and invited stakeholders’ comments within the next 30 days. It had mooted a ban on flying from three months up to an indefinite period for unruly passengers.
As per the draft norms, the national no-fly list will include names of passengers identified as unruly after an inquiry by a committee constituted by a particular airline. A person identified as a threat by security agencies would also be included in this list.
Although the list is characterised as national, containing data on passengers from all airlines, imposing the ban will not be made mandatory.
The proposed list comes in the wake of TDP Lok Sabha member J C Diwakar Reddy being barred by major airlines from taking their flights following allegedly creating the ruckus at Vizag airport last week.
This is the second incident involving a Lok Sabha member after Shiv Sena’s Ravindra Gaikwad was banned by carriers for some time after he had assaulted an Air India staffer a few months ago.
Duration of flying ban
The government has recommended three levels of unruly behaviours, each with a corresponding duration of flying ban.
The first level of misdemeanour includes disruptive behaviour such as physical gestures, verbal harassment and unruly behaviour because of inebriation. This level of offence would carry a flying ban of three months.
The second level relates to physically abusive behaviour such as pushing, hitting, grabbing, inappropriate touching or sexual harassment. Such actions could attract a six-month ban.
The third category pertains to life threatening behaviour such as damage to aircraft operating system, physical violence and attempted breach of flight crew compartment. In such instances, the ban could be for two years or an indefinite period.
In case a passenger repeats the same degree of offence, he or she would be banned for twice the period of the previous ban.