Saturday, January 19, 2013

Kachori-craving pilot delayed flight by an hour

An Air India pilot faces suspension after she defied orders to switch her scheduled Mumbai-Jodhpur-Delhi flight for a later, direct flight from Mumbai to Delhi. She wanted to fly via Jodhpur to pick up an order for the city's famous onion kachoris that she had placed. Her refusal to swap flights delayed the Mumbai-Delhi flight, left without a pilot, by an hour.

On Sunday, Captain Smriti Trehan was instructed by Air India to operate the 2pm Mumbai-Delhi flight. However, she chose to ignore the order and operate her originally scheduled 12pm flight, which had a halt at Jodhpur, all for the love of kachoris. Trehan, from Delhi, was staying at a hotel in Mumbai when she received the instruction to switch flights.

However, she reached the airport in time for the 12pm flight and informed the airline's operations department that she would operate that one. Sources say that Trehan had ordered a batch of pyaz kachoris, which were to be delivered to her at Jodhpur airport. As soon as her flight landed at Jodhpur, the package was delivered to her, and Trehan took off for Delhi without delay.

Meanwhile, it was chaos at Mumbai airport as AI's 2pm flight was left without a pilot. It took the airline an hour to find a replacement, and the flight eventually took off at 3 pm. The incident was later brought to the notice of senior AI officials, who have ordered an inquiry into the matter.

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