Airlines can’t deny specially abled boarding without medical advice; DGCA amends rules

Following massive uproar over IndiGo’s recent denial of boarding to such a passenger in Ranchi, aviation minister J M Scindia had ordered a review of the entire process.NEW DELHI: Airlines can no longer deny boarding to a person with disability on its own without a doctor examining the person and stating that the said passenger’s health may deteriorate during the journey. Following massive uproar over IndiGo’s recent denial of boarding to such a passenger in Ranchi, aviation minister J M Scindia had ordered a review of the entire process.
Accordingly, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) says it has from Thursday (July 21) amended the Civil Aviation Requirement (CAR) on “carriage by air — persons with disability (Divyangjan) and/or persons with reduced mobility” to improve the accessibility of boarding and flying for disabled ((Divyangjan) people.
“Airline shall not refuse carriage of any person on the basis of disability and/or reduced mobility. However, in case, an airline perceives that the health of such a passenger may deteriorate in-flight, the said passenger will have to be examined by a doctor in person – who shall in his/her opinion, categorically state the medical condition and whether the passenger is fit to fly or not,” the amended version of the rule says.
“After obtaining the medical opinion, the airline shall take an appropriate decision on the carriage of such passenger. In case of refusal of carriage by the airline, it shall inform the passenger in writing with the reasons therein immediately,” it adds.
The amendment comes on the heels of IndiGo denying a specially abled child to board a Ranchi-Hyderabad flight on May 7, 2022. Following a massive outcry on the issue, the DGCA has probed the case and faulted the airline’s insensitive handling of the matter. It had fined IndiGo Rs 5 lakh. The regulator had ruled IndiGo ground staff, which could have avoided the situation with “a more compassionate handling,” had ended up “exacerbating” the same.
FOLLOW US ON SOCIAL MEDIAFacebookTwitterInstagramKOO APPYOUTUBE

Leave a Comment