PV Sindhu Lashes At Indigo Staff On Twitter For Mistreating Her. Airline Defends Employee.

Airlines and their passengers have a very taciturn relationship.

One wrong move by a passenger can land them a spot on the no-fly list. And one wrong move by an airline can land them in the midst of a major PR disaster.

We’ve witnessed plenty such incidents over the last year of both the above varieties. This time, trouble has brewed between badminton champ P V Sindhu and Indigo Airlines.

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This afternoon, Olympic silver medallist P V Sindhu tweeted about her harrowing experience while flying with Indigo on a flight from Hyderabad to Mumbai.

Sindhu was flying by flight 6E 608 and claimed that the ground staff, one Mr. Ajeetesh, had misbehaved with her.

While her first tweet was a partial one due to Twitter’s character limit, she took to posting a text image detailing the incident in another tweet. Sindhu even mentioned how when another staff member tried to intervene, Ajeetesh behaved rudely with her too.

At first, the airline took note of Sindhu’s tweet and replied with a custom response to her tweet, asking her to share her contact details so that they could address her grievance over a call.

It is to be noted that this is a standard response that anyone who tweets to the airline about an issue receives.

However, Sindhu seemed to be in no mood to talk over call and directly asked them to speak to Ms. Ashima, the same staff that her intervened on her behalf with Mr. Ajeetesh.

She ended the tweet with the ‘folded hands’ emoji, making it clear that she had no interest discussing the subject further.

About two hours later, when the news had begun spreading amongst the media and people on social media had begun expressing their views, Indigo decided it was time to present their side of the story too.

The airline shared a three-part tweet, the first of which stated that they regretted the inconvenience that was caused to Sindhu.

Second, they claimed that the issue was mainly because of Sindhu’s oversized luggage which they had to accommodate somehow.

And finally, with a little sprinkle of sugar, they clarified that they meant no disrespect to her and were proud of her achievements in sports for the country.

After basic damage control on social media, Indigo Airlines even issued a statement, in which they defended their employee and claimed that he was simply following protocol pertaining to oversized baggage.

According to the TOI, an Indigo spokesperson, Ajay Jasra, issued the following statement to the media.

Ms P V Sindhu boarded flight 6E 608 Hyderabad-Mumbai… carrying oversized baggage which was not fitting into the overhead bin. Ms Sindhu was informed that it will be moved to cargo hold of the aircraft.

This is the same policy we follow for all customers.Oversized baggage inside the cabin inconveniences other customers and can also be a safety hazard if it cannot be secured properly in the cabin.

During the entire conversation, the member of the IndiGo ground operations remained calm. After several requests to her manager, they finally consented to the removal of the bag from the cabin. We then placed the over-sized baggage in the cargo hold and was handed over to Ms Sindhu on arrival.

We are extremely proud of Ms Sindhu’s sporting achievements and are grateful for the laurels she has won for our country. However, safety of our operations is paramount to IndiGo. We hope that Ms Sindhu will appreciate that our colleague was only carrying out his duty in the best interest of a safe and reliable operation.”

Following Indigo’s statement, both Sindhu’s manager and her father, have spoken up about the the situation, insisting that the ground staff indeed behaved rudely with her.

Sindhu’s manager, Yash, was seated about 10 rows behind her when the whole argument went down.

He claims that he never went up and spoke to either Sindhu or the staff, but witnessed the whole ordeal, particularly the moment when the staff allegedly shoved the bag in Sindhu’s face and told her to go do whatever she wanted.

Sindhu’s father expected that the airline would thank Sindhu for her inputs regarding their mistake, as opposed to defending their employee’s rude behaviour.

There’s no knowing who is really at fault here; only those present at the scene could vouch for both the staff and Sindhu’s sides of the story.

Personally, I think the airspace would just be a happier place if both passengers and airlines adhered to established protocols and common standards of courtesy.

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