With no other flight to Chennai that night, all six were forced to stay overnight in the city and fly out on Monday. To add insult to injury, the flyers alleged, IndiGo did not even arrange accommodation for them at the airport hotel.
The incident unfolded at Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) around 9.30pm on Sunday after the landing of the IndiGo flight 6E478 from Amritsar to Chennai via Bengaluru, where the other passengers deboarded.IndiGo sources at KIA confirmed the incident, and said two passengers were lodged in a hotel 13km from the airport for the night, while others decided to stay at the airport lounge. “All were accommodated on flights on Monday morning and flown to Chennai,” an airline official said.
The passengers, however, are aghast at the “blatant lying” by the IndiGo staffers, and want action for the inconvenience they faced. “Six passengers, including I, were seated in the plane on the Bengaluru tarmac when I received a call on my mobile phone from an IndiGo ground crew member asking me to get off the flight as he was waiting for me inside the airport with my boarding pass for another flight, ready to depart to Chennai,” recalled a passenger. The other five also received similar phone calls and frantically got off the plane.
The six flyers tracked down the IndiGo staffer, and realised they had been deceived. They argued with the staffer, who offered no assistance. “IndiGo’s assistant manager at the airport, Lloyd Pinto, came, but he too acted cold, with no sympathy for even the elderly passengers who were stranded. Finally, after admitting it was their fault, they had the audacity to deny us an airport hotel, saying we were not eligible,” said another passenger.
When TOI contacted IndiGo, its representative delved into details of the incident, but refused to respond on the passengers’ plight.