The flight ban has been revoked on Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad, two weeks after he allegedly assaulted a cabin crew member, on board a flight, 25 times with a slipper.
This incident was leaked in a video that went viral, and sparked a political storm that touched even the Parliament.
The Air India, however, had canceled Gaikwad's ticket for the 7th time, and demanded an unconditional apology.
The Aviation Minister, Gajapathi Raju, earlier today, wrote a letter to Air India, asking the national carrier to lift the flight ban on the Shiv Sena MP.
Gaikwad had sent a regret letter to the Aviation Minister yesterday, following which the ban was revoked, reported the news agencies.
The private carriers, following Air India’s lead, are also likely to revoke the ban on the Osmanabad MP.
“In view of the apology tendered by Mr Gaikwad and the undertaking of good conduct given by him, Air India and other airlines have been advised by the Ministry of Civil Aviation to lift ban on Gaikwad,” Air India said in a statement.
Shiv Sena, yesterday, had threatened to shut down Mumbai and Delhi airports if the ban on the MP was not revoked. Two days earlier, Shiv Sena MP Anant Geete, former Cabinet minister, had charged at Ashok Gajapathi Raju in Parliament. Raju had to be protected by Home Minister Rajnath Singh.
Gaikwad, had admitted on TV that he hit the Air India employee with his slippers. Air India, in retaliation, blocked seven attempts by him to book tickets by changing the spelling of a surname and using different prefixes such as Prof and Dr.
All the six airlines had cited passenger safety as a reason for banning him from flying.
In his letter to Raju, yesterday, Gaikwad, however, said the “incident may kindly not be seen as a reason for likely recurrence of such an event in the future also”.
He also said an ongoing investigation will “bring out the actual sequence of events to fix responsibility” in the incident, which triggered a wave of revulsion and anger against the MP.