The Delhi High Court on Thursday ordered the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) to constitute an appellate committee within two weeks’ time to examine Shankar Mishra’s appeal against Air India designating him an “unruly passenger” and banning him from flying for four months.
Mishra, who is accused of urinating on a woman co-passenger on a New York-Delhi Air India flight, recently moved the high court seeking the constitution of an appellate committee to hear his appeal.
The court has asked the DGCA committee to hold its first meeting on April 20 to hear Shankar Mishra’s plea. It also directed the petitioner Mishra to file an appeal in two weeks.
During the hearing, Justice Prathiba M. Singh mentioned that considering the facts of the case, the authorities have taken a very empathetic view of the matter.
In the last hearing, the DGCA counsel had claimed that the committee is already in place. The court had then asked the DGCA counsel to place the constitution of the appellate committee before the court within a week’s time.
Mishra, who was arrested by the Delhi Police from Bengaluru on January 7 for allegedly urinating on a 70-year-old woman while in a drunken state on a flight last November, was granted bail on January 31. Additional Sessions Judge (ASJ) Harjyot Singh Bhalla had granted bail on the bail bond of Rs 1 lakh.
Mishra has claimed in his petition where DGCA, Ministry of Civil Aviation and Air India have been made respondents, that on December 20, 2022, the complainant woman filed a complaint against him on the Airsewa grievance portal.
In response to the accusation, Air India formed an internal investigation committee. On January 18, 2023, the committee issued an order designating him as a “unruly passenger” and prohibiting him from flying for four months.
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