Air India Flight incident

Another Man ‘Urinated On’ Female Passenger’s In Paris-Delhi Air India Flight

Days after an incident in which a man allegedly urinated on an elderly woman during an Air India flight between New York-Delhi on November 26 last year, another incident of December 6 has come to light in which a “drunk man urinated on the blanket of a co-passenger” while the Air India flight was on its way from Paris to the national capital. The shocking incidents took place in a gap of 11 days.

Sources said that the incident of December 6 was not reported in writing to Delhi Police or Central Industrial Security Force (CISF).
“No written report has been filed with CISF and Delhi police regarding the incident on Dec 6,” a source told ANI.

A DGCA official also said no report has been filed with them regarding December 6 incident.

“No report has been filed with DGCA regarding December 6 incident,” the official told ANI.

Sources said that the male passenger involved in the incident on Air India AI- 142 flight was apprehended by the CISF at the IGI airport in Delhi after the flight landed but was allowed to go after he apologized in writing to the co-passenger and no police case was filed.

DGCA issues show-cause notices for dereliction of duty to the concerned people in such cases.

A response from Air India is awaited. Sources said the pilot of the Paris-Delhi flight did not report the incident to the DGCA.

Delhi Police has registered an FIR and Air India on Wednesday imposed a 30-day flying ban on the man who had allegedly urinated on an elderly co-passenger during a New York-Delhi flight in November last year.

While the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) also launched an investigation into the November incident, Air India has set up an internal panel to probe whether there were lapses on part of the crew in addressing the situation that caused distress to the woman.

The National Commission for Women has taken cognizance of the incident onboard the Air India flight in which the inebriated male passenger also flashed his private parts at the elderly woman during the New York-Delhi flight.

The Commission sought a detailed action taken report on the matter within seven days from the Delhi Police Commissioner. (ANI)

Read More: https://lokmarg.com

Air India Urination Incident

Air India Tries To Cover Up Not Reporting Two Urination Incidents To Aviation

Top officials of India’s aviation regulatory body DGCA and Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) are fuming that Air India did not report two shocking incidents of a passenger urinating on a co-passenger within a span of 11 days.

According to the aviation regulator, the incident on the Air India flight of November 26 from JFK ( New York ) to Delhi and again on December 6 from Paris to Delhi was not reported to the regulators and, in fact, both incidents were sought to be covered up by the airline. “Prima facie, it appears that the Air India cockpit and cabin crew were involved in a cover-up of the entire incidents by not reporting them to the regulatory body.”
According to the regulator, Directorate General of Civil Aviation or DGCA, “it appears that provisions related to handling an unruly passenger on board have not been complied with. The conduct of the concerned airline appears to be unprofessional and has led to a systemic failure. It lacks appreciation of regulatory obligations.”

The DGCA sources believe that the onboard operational levels of the airline clearly worked out a cover-up by attempting to push these horrific incidents under the carpet.

The regulatory body particularly showed displeasure over the December 6 incident, which in fact was earlier reported to Delhi’s Air Traffic Controller (ATC) about an unruly passenger who urinated on a blanket draped around a female co-passenger in-flight. The offending passenger has pulled aside at Delhi airport but no action was taken as he gave a written apology to the passenger. Even in this case, the cabin crew and the airline did not inform the regulator and basically silenced the matter among themselves.

On the role of the Central z industrial Security Force or CISF which secures the airports, a CISF source said, ” CISF has its limits to act on any passenger being unable to book a case under IPC”. In any case, the CISF cannot take action against a passenger unless the airline asks for the involvement of the local police in view of the offense committed.

DGCA sources said both incidents were let go by the cabin staff who are the only ones along with the affected passenger who can press charges by asking the police to file an FIR.

“The pilot is in charge of any airplane. And when there is an incident inside the airplane, it is like a crime not to report the incident like public urination,” a top Ministry of Civil aviation official told ANI.

On the two Air India passenger urination cases, the DGCA has issued show-cause notices to the Accountable Manager, Director of In-Flight Services, Air India, and the pilots and cabin crew members of the November 26 flight as to why enforcement action should not be taken against them for non-discharge of their duties.

Investigations into the two cases have been initiated by the concerned authorities and both passengers have been sought to be put on the ‘no-fly-list’.

ANI reached out to Air India for comments but there has been no response so far. (ANI)

Read More: https://lokmarg.com

Man Who Urinated On Woman

Man Who Urinated On Woman On Flight Will Be Arrested: Delhi Police

Delhi Police on Thursday said that the man who allegedly urinated on an elderly woman co-passenger onboard an Air India flight was a resident of Mumbai and will be arrested at the earliest.

“The accused is a resident of Mumbai, but his possible location is in some other state and the police team has reached there. We will arrest the accused at the earliest,” said Delhi Police.
On Wednesday, Delhi Police said that it has formed teams to nab the man who allegedly urinated on an elderly co-passenger onboard an Air India flight from New York to Delhi in November last year.

The Police on Wednesday filed an FIR on the shocking incident based on a complaint by Air India.

The police have registered an FIR in the matter under sections 354, 509, and 510 of the Indian Penal Code and Section 23 of the Indian Aircraft Act. Both the accused and the victim are from outside Delhi.

The shocking incident occurred on November 26 when the flight was on its way from John F Kennedy international airport in New York to Delhi.

“We have formed a team to trace the accused passenger. The investigation is going on and he will be arrested soon,” a police official said.

Air India said as a first part, it has banned the passenger for 30 days, the maximum it is permitted to unilaterally do so.

The airline said it has taken very serious note of the incident that caused extreme distress to a passenger.

“Air India has taken a very serious note of the incident, where a passenger behaved in an unacceptable and undignified manner on the New York-Delhi flight that caused extreme distress to a fellow passenger. A police complaint has already been lodged in this case and Air India is committed to assisting the law enforcement agencies as well as regulatory authorities in ensuring that justice is delivered to the aggrieved passenger,” an Air India spokesperson said.

While the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) also launched an investigation, Air India has set up an internal panel to probe whether there were lapses on the part of the crew in addressing the situation that caused distress to the woman.

The National Commission for Women has taken cognizance of the incident onboard the Air India flight in which the inebriated male passenger also flashed his private parts at the elderly woman.

The Commission has sought a detailed action taken report on the matter within seven days from the Delhi Police Commissioner.

In her letter to the chairman of the Board of Tata Sons, N Chandrasekaran, the woman passenger, who is in her seventies, called the flight experience extremely traumatic and expressed deep disappointment over the incident in the business class section of the flight.

In her letter, the woman said the ‘appalling incident’ occurred shortly after the lunch was served and the lights were switched off, as she was getting ready to sleep. The flight had taken off from John F Kennedy international airport in New York.

She said that within minutes, an inebriated male walked to her seat and unzipped his pants, relieving himself and continued to expose his private parts until another passenger asked him to return to his seat.

“I am writing to express my deep disappointment regarding the appalling incident that occurred during my business class trip on flight AI102 (commencing in NY, JFK yesterday 26th November at 12.30 pm, and arriving this afternoon in New Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport at approximately 1.30 pm). This has been the most traumatic flight that I have ever experienced.

“During the course of the flight, shortly after lunch was served and the lights were switched off, I was getting ready to sleep, and another passenger walked to my seat completely inebriated. He unzipped his pants, relieved himself, and continued to expose me to his private parts. The passenger sitting next to me asked him to return to his seat. He did not respond immediately, but after a few moments left the area,” the letter read.

The woman passenger who is in her seventies, in the letter, also highlighted that when asked for a change of seat, “the airline refused and informed her there were no seats available”. She also complained about being allotted a small seat used by the airline staff, by one of the senior stewardesses. (ANI)

Read More: https://lokmarg.com

Air India Flight incident

FIR Registered Against Man Who Urinated On Woman In Flight

Air India on Wednesday said it has imposed a 30-day flying ban on a passenger who had allegedly urinated on an elderly co-passenger during a New York-Delhi flight in November last year and Delhi Police has registered an FIR over the shocking incident.

While the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) also launched an investigation, Air India has set up an internal panel to probe whether there were lapses on part of the crew in addressing the situation that caused distress to the woman.

The National Commission for Women has taken cognisance of the incident onboard the Air India flight in which the inebriated male passenger also flashed his private parts at the elderly woman.

The Commission has sought a detailed action taken report within seven days from the Delhi Police Commissioner over the incident.

Air India said as a first part, it has banned the passenger for 30 days, the maximum it is permitted to unilaterally do so.

The airline said it has taken very serious note of the incident that caused extreme distress to a passenger.

“Air India has taken a very serious note of the incident, where a passenger behaved in an unacceptable and undignified manner on the New York-Delhi flight that caused extreme distress to a fellow passenger. A police complaint has already been lodged in this case and Air India is committed to assisting the law enforcement agencies as well as regulatory authorities to ensure that justice is delivered to the aggrieved passenger,” an Air India spokesperson said, adding that they have reported the matter to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) for further action.

“We have also constituted an internal committee to probe lapses on the part of Air India’s crew and address the deficiencies that delayed quick redressal of the situation. We are also in regular contact with the aggrieved passenger and her family during the investigation and reporting process,” the spokesperson added.

The Delhi Police has registered the FIR under sections 354, 509, 510 of the Indian Penal Code and 23 of the Indian Aircraft Act against the man.

The police said the incident occurred on November 26 and the airline concerned (Air India) approached the police after a month and two days, i.e., on December 28.

In her letter to the chairman of the Board of Tata Sons, N Chandrasekaran, the woman passenger, who is in her seventies, called the flight experience extremely traumatic and expressed deep disappointment over the incident in the business class section of the flight.

In her letter, the woman said the ‘appalling incident’ occurred shortly after the lunch was served and the lights were switched off, as she was getting ready to sleep. The flight had taken off from John F Kennedy international airport in New York.

She said that within minutes, an inebriated male walked to her seat and unzipped his pants, relieving himself and continued to expose his private parts until another passenger asked him to return to his seat.

“During the course of the flight, shortly after lunch was served and the lights were switched off, I was getting ready to sleep, and another passenger walked to my seat completely inebriated. He unzipped his pants, relieved himself, and continued to expose me to his private parts. The passenger sitting next to me asked him to return to his seat. He did not respond immediately, but after a few moments left the area,” her letter said.

The country’s aviation regulator the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) said that it has sought a report of the incident from the airline and said “action will be taken against those negligent.”

NCW chairperson Rekha Sharma wrote Delhi Comissioner of Police Sanjay Arora that strict action should be taken against the culprit for “causing mental trauma to an elderly woman”.

“NCW has come across several media reports wherein it has been alleged that a drunken man urinated on a woman co-passenger in an Air India flight in November and left without facing any action. It has also been reported that after urinating, the man allegedly didn’t move until another passenger asked him to leave. The woman had complained to the crew, however, the crew allegedly gave her a set of pyjamas and slippers and told her to return to her seat, claiming no other seat was available,” the NCW statement said.

The Commission said it has also written to the Air India Chairman to take appropriate action against the culprit.

“The Commission has taken cognizance of the matter. Chairperson Rekha Sharma has written to the Commissioner of Police, Delhi to immediately register FIR in the matter under relevant provisions of law and to take strict action against the culprit for causing mental trauma to an elderly woman. The Commission has also written to the Chairman, Air India Limited to intervene in the matter and to take appropriate action against the culprit for the horrendous behaviour of an elderly woman on a flight and violating her right to live a life of dignity and safety,” the national women’s panel said.

“A detailed action taken in the matter must be communicated to the Commission within seven days,” the NCW added. (ANI)

Read More: https://lokmarg.com

Man Who Urinated On Woman

Paris-Bound Air India Flight Makes Emergency Landing In Delhi

An Air India flight bound for Paris was forced to return to New Delhi on Wednesday after a snag was detected midair.

The flight carrying 210 passengers landed safely at the airport, said the national carrier.
A senior Directorate General of Civil Aviation official informed that Air India B787-800 aircraft VT-AND operating flight AI143 from Delhi to Paris was involved in an air turnback due to a “Slats Drive” snag message.

The DGCA ordered an inquiry after Air India’s Delhi to Paris flight made an emergency landing at Indira Gandhi International Airport on Wednesday afternoon.

He added that the emergency landing happened at 2:25 pm, owing to a flap issue.

The flight took off at 1:28 pm and a full emergency was declared at 2:03 pm and landed safely. It had 210 passengers on board when an emergency was declared. All passengers are safe. (ANI)

Read More: https://lokmarg.com

Man Urinates On Woman Passenger

Man Flashes, Urinates On Woman Passenger Onboard NY-Delhi Flight, DGCA Seeks Report

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has launched an investigation into an incident aboard an Air India flight in which a co-passenger urinated over a senior citizen travelling in business class and exposed his private parts to her on a flight from New York to Delhi.

The incident reportedly took place on November 26 on the Air India flight from John F Kennedy international airport in New York to Delhi and a written complaint, by a woman passenger in her 70s, stated that her male co-passenger was in a fully inebriated state and had walked up to her seat, unzipped his pants and relieved himself. He also exposed his private parts to her.

The country’s aviation regulator the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) on Wednesday said that it has sought a report of the incident from the airline and said: “action will be taken against those negligent.”

Air India has also lodged a police complaint in connection with the case.

Speaking to ANI, an Air India official said, “Air India has lodged a police complaint regarding the incident which took place on November 26 when the flight was on its way from JFK to Delhi.”

Air India has also formed an internal committee that recommended that the male passenger be placed on a “no-fly list,” the official said.

Delhi Police has said that an FIR will be filed under the Indian Penal Code 354 (a) molestation and can also add section 506 criminal intimidation and IPC 290.

In her letter to the Chairman of the Board of Tata and Sons, N Chandrasekaran, the woman passenger said called the flight experience extremely traumatic and expressed deep disappointment over the incident that took place in the business class section of the flight.

In her letter, the woman said that the appalling incident took place shortly after lunch was served and the lights were switched off, as she was getting ready to sleep.

Within minutes, an inebriated male walked to her seat and unzipped his pants, relieved himself, and continued to expose his private parts until another passenger asked him to return to his seat.

“I am writing to express my deep disappointment regarding the appalling incident that occurred during my business class trip on flight AI102 (commencing in NY, JFK yesterday 26th November at 12.30 pm, and arriving this afternoon in New Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport at approximately 1.30 pm). This has been the most traumatic flight that I have ever experienced. During the course of the flight, shortly after lunch was served and the lights were switched off, I was getting ready to sleep, and another passenger walked to my seat completely inebriated. He unzipped his pants, relieved himself, and continued to expose me to his private parts. The passenger sitting next to me asked him to return to his seat. He did not respond immediately, but after a few moments left the area,” the letter read.

The woman passenger, in the letter, also highlighted that when asked for a change of seat, the airline refused and informed her there were no seats available. She also complained about being alloted a small seat used by the airline staff, by one of the senior stewardesses.

The woman passenger was later given a steward’s seat where she sat for the remaining journey of about 5 hours.

“I subsequently learned from a fellow passenger that several seats were available in First Class and he suggested to the crew that I be moved into one of those rather than being forced to sit in a soiled seat. Clearly, the crew did not feel that taking care of a distressed passenger was a priority]. At the end of the flight, the staff told me they would get me a wheelchair to ensure that I clear customs as early as possible. However, the wheelchair deposited me at a waiting area, where I waited for 30 minutes, and nobody came to get me. I finally had to clear customs on my own and collected the luggage by myself – all in Air India pyjamas and socks,” the complaint letter added as the female passenger called the Air India crew deeply unprofessional.

In the letter, the woman passenger stated that the crew was not proactive in managing a very sensitive and traumatic situation and she had to advocate for herself throughout, waiting for long periods of time to get a response.

“I am particularly distressed that the Airline made no attempt to ensure my safety or comfort during this incident. Given your reputation for excellence in other aspects of your business, I hope that you will take appropriate steps to ensure that this will never be repeated,” she said. (ANI)

Read More: https://lokmarg.com

Vistara and Air India merger

Tata Group: Merger Of Air India, Vistara By March 2024

The Tata Group on Tuesday announced the merger of its two airlines Vistara and Air India. With this consolidation, Air India will be India’s leading domestic and international carrier with a combined fleet of 218 aircraft, making it India’s largest international carrier and second-largest domestic carrier.

Vistara shall be merged with Air India post-receipt of requisite approvals. As part of the merger transaction, SIA shall also invest Rs 2,059 crore in Air India. Post the consolidation, SIA shall hold 25.1 percent shareholding in Air India. The transaction is estimated to be completed by March 2024.
Air India, an airline fully owned by Tata Sons, has been the flag carrier of India. Tata Sons, via its fully-owned subsidiary Talace Private Limited or Talace, acquired a 100 percent stake in Air India on January 27, 2022.

Vistara, a 51:49 joint venture between Tata Sons and Singapore Airlines Limited (SIA), had been established in 2013 and is India’s leading full-service carrier with international operations in the Middle East, Asia, and Europe.

On this occasion, N Chandrasekaran, Chairman, of Tata Sons, said: “The merger of Vistara and Air India is an important milestone in our journey to make Air India a truly world-class airline. We are transforming Air India, with the aim of providing a great customer experience, every time, for every customer. As part of the transformation, Air India is focusing on growing both its network and fleet, revamping its customer proposition, enhancing safety, reliability, and on-time performance.”

The Chairman added, “We are excited about the opportunity of creating a strong Air India which would offer both full-service and low-cost service across domestic and international routes. We would like to thank Singapore Airlines for their continued partnership.”

Goh Choon Phong, Chief Executive Officer, of Singapore Airlines, said: “Tata Sons is one of the most established and respected names in India. Our collaboration to set up Vistara in 2013 resulted in a market-leading full-service carrier, which has won many global accolades in a short time.”

“With this merger, we have an opportunity to deepen our relationship with Tata and participate directly in an exciting new growth phase in India’s aviation market. We will work together to support Air India’s transformation programme, unlock its significant potential, and restore it to its position as a leading airline on the global stage,” the CEO said. (ANI)

Read More: https://lokmarg.com/

A Debt-Laden Air India

‘I Wish Tatas Make Air India As Good As Their Vistara’

Debashree Mukherjee, 39, an HR Professional and a frequent flyer, says if Tatas can turn around a debt-laden Air India, it will be the revival story of the century

Before the pandemic struck, my husband, daughter and I used to travel a lot, both within the country and abroad. In the domestic circuit, Air India and Tata Group’s Air Vistara were most often our chosen carriers. However, for international routes, we didn’t prefer Air India because better services were available at the same price in other airlines. If we could transfer/interchange flyer miles to other airlines, we would do that too.

So when the Air India’s acquisition by Tata Group was announced recently, I felt connected. Given how people-oriented Tata’s policies are, I know that the current employees won’t be left in the lurch (unlike say the scenario at Jet many years ago). Having said that I am skeptical of the profitability of Air India. I don’t doubt Tata’s efficacy but I feel that Air India’s condition is very, very difficult and it will be mighty challenging for even Tata to pull it off.

The debt-laden airlines is in the best hands I believe, but is the best good enough? If Tatas can turn it around, there cannot be a better revival story than this. And given the fact that it was Tatas who started Air India before it was nationalised, maybe the emotional connect will bring about some solid changes. Tatas will have to be ‘disruptive’ if they believe that Air India can be brought back to its original glory.

Mukherjee says travelling is an experience be it for business or vacation

Travelling is an experience, be it for recreation or business and Air India needs to tap into that. A certain spark is missing in the airline, though we preferred it so far because of the extra facilities it provided – like an extra 10 kg baggage allowed in comparison to other airlines or an extra 30 kgs if you are a Star Gold member as well as complimentary meals.

ALSO READ: Tatas Buy Wings For Maharajah

But how often do we need to travel with such heavy luggage? Not many times. Air India will need to be more people-centric and customise its services, which I believe Tatas can do. Even though there are confirmed complimentary meals, the food quality could definitely be enhanced.

While in domestic travel, the leg room in Air India is the same as all other airlines, when it comes to long-distance international travel, Air India has less leg space than other airlines. We travel business class and relaxation is right up there on our priority list as a family, since my little girl also travels with us.

Air India has come to represent India with its involvement in various difficult rescue missions, and I believe even after it is privatised, the sentimental value will continue to be there. I believe that will play an important part in rebuilding brand Air India.

And given how much I enjoy flying Air Vistara, run by Tata Group, if they can revive Air India and bring it at par with Air Vistara, none would be happier than me. Vistara has new world amenities, amiable and cooperative attendants and customised, good quality food services. The most recent flight that I took was with Vistara around September end and even in these times of pandemic, it was a good experience.

I sincerely hope the skies open up completely like before and we are free to travel the world again and explore its wonders.

Ratan Tata And Aryan Khan

Weekly Update: Getting Air India Is Step 1 For Tatas; No Bail For Khan


The Tata acquisition of Air India has unleashed high-decibel social media buzz, much of it bullish yelps in favour of the Tatas who were the original owners of the airline before it got nationalised in 1953. The privatisation of Air India has taken 20 years since it was first attempted back in 2000. And the saga of what happened to those attempts and why they were unsuccessful over the past two decades is well-documented. In that context, the Tata acquisition is certainly welcome but could it be too early to rejoice? With the acquisition of the flagship airlines, the Tata’s have also inherited a daunting challenge.

In the best of times, the air travel business can be a dicey proposition. In the wake of the Corona pandemic, things have been devastating for the sector. A recent McKinsey & Co. report on the prospects for the sector post Covid estimates that in 2020, global industry revenue totaled $328 billion, around 40 percent of what it was in 2019. For perspective, it means the sector’s revenue in 2020 is the same as what it was in 2000, that is, two decades ago. What is more, McKinsey estimates that the sector will continue to remain smaller (and may even shrink further) in the years to come. To be sure, the consulting firm projects that air traffic won’t return to 2019 levels before 2024.

Air India has an accumulated loss of Rs 77,953 crore and debt of Rs 61,562 crore. And although the pandemic may have wreaked havoc on the company as it has on every airline in the world, it must be noted that Air India never made profits since 2007 when the state-owned domestic airline, Indian Airlines, was merged with it. That is, no profits at all in the past 14 years.

So, to bring things back to the ground, the Tatas have a task on their hand. The global environment for the aviation business is something that airlines companies have little control over besides being smartly reactive to it. But Air India has a host of other issues that have to be tackled. First, it may be the Tatas’ largest interest in the sector but it is by no means their only aviation business: besides Air India, the Tatas have Air Asia in which they own a nearly 85% equity stake; and Vistara in which they own 51% stake (Singapore Airlines has the rest). It would be interesting to see how the Tatas configure their airlines business in a way that is best for each of these entities. Will they go for a merger? Or operate them independently?

Second, there is the question of management of Air India.The airline has not had a professional CEOin a while and it is a bureaucrat, the civil aviation secretary of the Government of India who has been officiating in that role. The Tatas would have to embark on a search for a suitable person to helm the company.

Third, there are the financial liabilities and operational losses. The Air India acquisition also comes with retirement benefits that the airline pays to nearly 55,000 retired employees. But that is small change compared to the investment needed in modernising the airline’s fleet of aircraft. Air India and its subsidiary has 117 aircraft, while its subsidiary the low-cost Air India Express has 24. Many of these need to be replaced or equipped with new engines and that would entail hefty expenses.

Finally, the airline operates on many routes that are not remunerative. During its years under government ownership, meddling by the ministry has often led to adding routes on political and not economic considerations. Air India’s new owners will need to sort those out as well. For the Tatas, getting back control of what they once owned (very long ago) is only the beginning of a long journey.

No Bail For Aryan Khan

A raid conducted by the Narcotics Control Bureau on October 2, reverberated through newsrooms and social media platforms throughout this week. While eight people were arrested from a party on a luxury cruise ship, Cordelia, on Mumbai’s shores, the one name among them that has hogged all the limelight is Aryan Khan, son of Bollywood superstar Shahrukh, “King Khan” or SRK as he is better known.

Fans are frantic in their protests that he is being targeted by the Narendra Modi government for his closeness to the Thackeray family. They cite the role of a local BJP supporter who gave the tip off and accompanied the NCB sleuths during the raid, to drive home the point that the Centre wants Khan to “fall in line” or else. On the other side of the debate are those who consider Bollywood a drug den, where,they allege, drug abuse is rampant and there is a huge demand for illegal drugs. This group cites the drug links that surfaced after the death of talented young actor Sushant Singh Rajput last year, involving top film stars.

The debate spilled over to political circles this week. NCP and Shiv Sena leaders, including chief minister Uddhav Thackeray have questioned the legal alacrity in drug bust case, conrasting it with the lethargic action in Lakhimpur case where a union minister’s son was involved in running over a vehicle on farmers.

Both sides have ignored the facts. First, the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act has strict provisions to keep those charged under it behind bars. This means the bail under NDPS is difficult to get. In comparison, the bail provision under road accidents comes under culpable homicide. So comparing the Lakhimpur with Mumbai drug bust is unfair (Salman Khan allegedly ran his SUV over Mumbai footpath dwellers in 2002 and was granted easy bail, and later acquitted).

However, coming to the drugs case, the NDPS provisions were supposedly made tough to discipline drug dealers and peddlers, not the user. From university students, young corporates, party circuit regulars to hill trekkers and religious Hindu hermits, use of banned drugs is common. From Kumbh festival to Kanwad Yatra, use of psychotropic substances is more a spectacle than a hush-hush matter. Yet, the NCB team targeted only the users, in this case high-profile, clearly raising doubts. In any case, the Modi government at the Centre is now considered, not without reasons, using central investigating agencies to make their critics or opponents fall in line.

What probably in this vendetta politics, the powers that be do not realise that they are playing with the lives of several youth. The prison atmosphere can be an overwhelming experience for an undertrial. In high-profile cases, this may scar their psyche for life. What good can come out by keeping a band of 20-somethings in judicial custody for experimenting with banned substances for an occasional kick? Lawmakers and law enforcers must keep that in mind