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Jet Airways responds to Harbhajan's allegations, de-rosters the pilot

Harbhajan spoke out against alleged racial discrimination by a Jet Airways pilot against an Indian passenger.

News 26 Apr 2017, 13:58 IST
Harbhajan Singh plays for the Mumbai Indians franchise in the IPL

Jet Airways have responded to the allegations of racism being levelled at them by India cricketer Harbhajan Singh, wherein the cricketer had accused one of the pilots employed with the airlines of using racist comments directed at a fellow passenger.

In a statement issued on its Twitter handle, the airlines responded to the cricketer's allegations and divulged that the pilot concerned had been de-rostered immediately after the incident and also that they have initiated an inquiry into the matter. 

This settles the issue for now, given that the pilot has been suspended, but in the greater scheme of things, it must be ensured that such an incident is never repeated.

Earlier, India cricketer Harbhajan Singh had lashed out at Jet Airways and one of their pilots for what he deemed to be a “racist behaviour” towards an Indian passenger. In a series of tweets, the 35-year-old cricketer named a certain Bernd Hoesslin, a pilot with Jet, and accused him of making racist comments directed at a fellow passenger.

The first of his three tweets read, “So called this Bernd Hoesslin a pilot with @jetairways called my fellow indian(u bloody indian get out of my flight)while he is earning here.”

The series of accusations didn't stop here. In his next tweet, Harbhajan said that the pilot not only racially abused an Indian passenger but also physically assaulted a lady and a physically challenged man. The actions of the pilot were disgraceful and only brought shame to the airlines, Harbhajan said.

The second tweet read, “Not only was he racist but physically assaulted a lady and abused a physically challenged man..absolutely disgraceful &shame on @jetairways.”

Visibly miffed at the attitude of airlines and the crew members, Harbhajan urged his countrymen to stand up against such acts of discrimination and to be proud of their nationality. He demanded strict action against the airlines and the crew member in question as his last tweet read, “Strict action must b taken &such things should not be allowed or tolerated in r country.. #proudtobeindian let's get together and sort this.”

From the cricketer's tweets and the reactions received therein, it looked to be clear that such an act of discrimination took place on the board and now that the accusations are found to be true, action had to be taken against the accused.

This isn't the first case in recent times about onboard discrimination by aircraft operators.  A few weeks earlier, a passenger was forcefully removed from a United Airlines aircraft despite having a valid ticket owing to the airlines’ overbooking problem.

Such incidents must be nipped in the bud and the passengers must not be made to suffer, especially after having boarded the aircraft. 

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