In yet another controversy, an Indigo flight left the airport on Monday night without taking 14 passengers who has already had boarding passes. The untoward incident took place at Goa Airport.
An Indigo Goa-Hyderabad flight was taken off without carrying fourteen passengers who had already taken boarding passes. The passengers stranded in the airport alleged that the flight departed earlier than its scheduled time without making any announcement.
An Indigo spokesperson countered their claims, saying that the airline made several announcements calling the passengers to report at the gate. Flight 6E 259 was scheduled for a 10.50pm departure yesterday, but left 25 minutes before the scheduled time according to the passengers.
The 14 passengers, who had their boarding passes and were waiting to board the flight, were left behind unawares at the airport. The flight's scheduled time of arrival in Hyderabad was 12.05am, but it landed at 11.40pm.
An Indigo spokesperson said that the passengers were declared "gate no-show".
"The boarding gate closed at 10:25pm and they reached the gate at 10.33pm. IndiGo staff looked for them at the airport while making frantic announcements over hand-held loudspeaker," said the airline.
"They (staff) had called them on the phone number provided by the passengers, but it turned out to be that of their travel agent, Thomas Cook, who refused to give us their phone numbers but promised that they will inform the passengers," the spokesperson said adding that many other passengers also witnessed the airline's efforts to search the passengers at airport.
In the best interest of those who boarded on time, we closed the gates and deplaned the passengers who reached late. "Despite no fault on our part, we shifted them to the next morning flight free of charge," the airline added.
The incident also raises the question whether IndiGo carried out "passenger baggage reconciliation", a mandatory security norm which requires an airline to check whether all the passengers who have checked in their bags are onboard. If any of the 14 passengers who were left behind had a check-in bag and the aircraft left without the airline offloading that check-in bag, then it is a breach of security.
Recently, Indigo Airlines has been in news for wrong reasons too. It is not long ago Indigo had got warning from the parliamentary committee for its rude staff behavior towards passengers.