Published: Sat, March 25, 2017
Life&Culture | By Kristin Armstrong

Shiv Sena MP's unruly behavior caught on cam: Barred from flying

Shiv Sena MP's unruly behavior caught on cam: Barred from flying

While prominent airliners in the country has banned Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad after he assaulted an Air India staffer on Thursday, an independent MLA has come forward in his defence.

Air India had registered two FIRs against Gaikwad over the incident.

It is not about a single MP but thousands of passengers who have to face numerous troubles due to Air India's poor service, he said.

Gaikwad also claims that he was made to travel by Air India on economy class even when he had business class ticket. "Be it a MP or a normal person everyone loses their temper at some point of time", Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut told ANI.

Gaikwad was in the eye of a row in 2014 for allegedly trying to force-feed a Muslim caterer during Ramzan over the quality of chapatis served at the Maharashtra Sadan in New Delhi. The man, who appears to be a fakir, falls at the MP's feet, but Radadiya goes on kicking him.

The police filed the FIR after a complaint by Air India and its staff member.

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"ICPA strongly condemns and demands an unconditional apology for the same failing which we will be constrained to direct our members not to operate any flight which has Mr.Ravindra Gaikwad on board in the interest of the safety and security of our own people", the letter adds.

An Air India manager, Sukumar Raman boarded the plane to persuade the MP to exit. He refused to get off the plane for an hour which delayed Air India's next flight, the airline said on Thursday. He also dared Delhi Police to arrest him and alleged that it was Sukumar who hit him first.

The MP's ticket for his return flight from Delhi to Pune was canceled by Air India after the ruckus. "How can they not allow me?" he said. The press caught up with him in Kota and the normally exuberant Sena MP refused to say much saying that he'd let Uddhav Thackeray or Anil Desai speak for him. Verbal assault is something but physical assault is quite another.

Shiv Sena, a regional party in Maharashtra, is known for its aggressive stance on various issues, often resorting to intimidation and threats of violence to get its point across.

The Shiv Sena politician, however, remained defiant and unrepentant, and instead blamed the airline employee, R Sukumar, for the incident. "I kept asking for a complaint book but they kept refusing". I have been dealing with the public. "We believe that exemplary action should be taken in such incidents to protect employee morale and public safety".

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