Chartered Flight for Team India: DGCA Seeks Report from Air India for Passenger Inconvenience

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  • DGCA demands explanation from Air India for prioritizing chartered flight for Team India over scheduled Newark-Delhi flight.
  • Some passengers unaware of the change faced inconvenience; alternative arrangements were made.
  • Indian cricket team, winners of the T20 World Cup, are returning on a special chartered flight delayed by Hurricane Beryl.

Why Did DGCA Seek a Report from Air India?

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has requested a detailed report from Air India following reports that a Boeing 777, originally scheduled for a Newark to Delhi flight, was repurposed to bring the Indian cricket team back from Barbados. This sudden change caused significant inconvenience to passengers who were supposed to travel on the Newark-Delhi flight.

How Were Passengers Affected?

An Air India official clarified that most passengers with tickets for the Newark to Delhi flight on July 2 were informed in advance about the change. However, a few passengers who did not receive the notification arrived at the airport and faced unexpected delays. These passengers were transported by road to New York, where they were accommodated on another flight to Delhi.

The Cricket Team’s Journey

The Indian cricket team, celebrating their T20 World Cup victory on June 29, is expected to land in New Delhi on Thursday morning. They are traveling from Grantley Adams International Airport in Barbados on a chartered flight with the special call sign “AIC24WC – Air India Champions 24 World Cup.” The team’s departure was initially postponed due to Hurricane Beryl.

Implications and Next Steps

The DGCA’s inquiry underscores the importance of balancing chartered flight demands with the needs of scheduled commercial passengers. Air India will need to provide a thorough explanation of the steps taken to notify passengers and the measures implemented to mitigate the inconvenience caused. This incident highlights the need for improved communication and contingency planning in the airline industry to ensure passenger satisfaction and regulatory compliance.

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