The Ministry of Civil Aviation has issued rules to tackle on-board disruptive and unruly behaviour by passengers. It allows for formation of national, No Fly List of such unruly passengers.
In this regard, DGCA has revised relevant sections of Civil Aviation Requirement (CAR Section 3, Series M, Part Vl on Handling of Unruly Passengers). It has been done in accordance with provisions of Tokyo Convention 1963.
The promulgation of No-Fly List in India is unique and first-of-its-kind in world. Its concept is based on concern for safety of passengers, crew and aircraft and not just on security threat.
Revised CAR will be applicable for all Indian operators engaged in scheduled and non-scheduled air transport services, both domestic and international. It will also be applicable to foreign carriers subject to compliance of Tokyo Convention 1963.
It defines three categories of unruly behavior (i) Level 1: Behaviour that is verbally unruly, and calls for debarment upto 3 months if found guilty; Level 2: Physical unruliness and can lead to passenger being debarred from flying for upto 6 months and Level 3: Life-threatening behaviour where debarment would be for a minimum of 2 years.
The cases of unruly behaviour will be probed by an internal committee set up by every domestic airline under chairmanship of retired District and Sessions judge. Its members will be from different scheduled airlines and consumer associations, passenger associations and retired officials of Consumer Dispute Redressal Forum.
The internal committee will have to decide matter of offence committed by passenger within 30 days along with duration of ban. In case Internal Committee fails to come to a decision in 30 days then passenger will be free to fly. Revised CAR also has appeal mechanism which provides an aggrieved person provision to appeal within 60 days of order to an appellate committee constituted by Ministry of Civil Aviation.
Interestingly, under new CAR one airline is not be bound by no-fly list of another domestic airline. It also does not allow passenger to circumvent domestic fly ban by flying to nearby foreign country and then fly back to original destination in India. Moreover, unruly behaviour of passengers in airport premises will be dealt with by relevant security agencies.