New Delhi (Sputnik) — The Indian aviation sector is facing one embarrassment after another with the latest being that a pilot refused to fly the craft he was supposed to fly, leaving passengers in the lurch.
The incident occurred in Jaipur in India's eastern state of Rajasthan where passengers of an Air India flight were waiting for their departure to Delhi. However, after waiting for a considerable amount of time, they were informed that the pilot who was supposed to fly them to Delhi was unable to carry on with his duty.
"The pilot and crew of a flight coming from Delhi were scheduled to take the flight (9I-644) from Jaipur to Delhi last night. But, the flight from Delhi was delayed and landed at Jaipur at 1:30 a.m.," a staff at the Air India station office told an Indian news agency on condition of anonymity.
It later came to be known that the pilot refused to take up the assignment, as his duty time had already exceeded the prescribed limit due to the delay of the previous flight.
"The pilot's duty time got over and therefore, he could not take the flight," J S Balhara, director of Jaipur Sanganer airport, told media after the incident.
He also added that a pilot cannot exceed duty hours for safety reasons as per the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) norms.
The incident, which happened on Thursday morning, comes close on the heels of a viral video of an Indigo airline passenger being manhandled by the staff on the tarmac while he was waiting to board a bus to the arrival terminal.