Reportedly, more than 50 passengers were waiting to board the plane.
Passengers can miss their flights for various reasons — arriving late at the airport or the flight being overbooked are some of them. But once you have the boarding pass in your hand and are made to board the shuttle bus to be ferried to the aircraft, you can be reasonably confident of getting onto the plane. But that’s not quite what happened with a Go First flight between Bengaluru and Delhi.
On Monday, some passengers booked on a Go First flight from Bengaluru (BLR) to Delhi (DEL) took to social media to report something unusual. As they waited inside a shuttle bus that was taking them to the aircraft assigned for the flight, they learned that it had already departed without them.
Go First flight G8 116 is a scheduled flight between Bengaluru and Delhi with a departure time of 06:20. On Monday, several passengers posted on Twitter, alleging that the plane assigned for the flight left Bengaluru, with more than 50 passengers still in the shuttle bus.
One of the passengers even posted an image of his boarding pass, clearly showing the flight details, including the seat assigned to him. India’s aviation regulator, the DGCA, has asked the airline to provide an explanation for this, with the Indian Express quoting an official as saying,
“We have sought a report from the airline and appropriate action shall be taken afterwards.”
Go First apologizes
The airline responded to one of the tweets, apologizing to the passenger for the inconvenience. Another passenger told NDTV that they were also given the option to take an Air India flight later in the morning at 10:00.
While cases of one or two passengers being left behind are not unheard of, a busload of more than 50 passengers not being accounted for like this appears strange. Airlines also perform checks at various stages to ensure that those who have checked in make it to the plane safely. We’ll have to wait for Go First’s official statement to know what happened exactly.
Go First was under the microscope last year due to incidents of passengers arriving at the airport only to find out that their flight did not exist. The DGCA also pulled up the airline and demanded an explanation.
The carrier was also in the news for facing capacity issues after several of its planes were grounded due to a lack of engines and spare parts, which were delayed due to global supply chain problems. But engine maker Pratt & Whitney assured Indian airlines that it will resolve the issue by March this year.
Recently, Go First secured a loan of ₹4 billion (around $49 million) as part of the Indian government’s Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS). The airline will also receive ₹5.1 billion ($61.5 million) from its owners Wadia Group as working capital.
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