Thursday, June 10, 2010

Air Travels and Passenger Care

Last two months, I was travelling by road and air to Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Goa, Hyderabad and Bhubaneswar on some Official work like Admissions, Alumni meets, Workshop, promotion of eGPX 2010 work, etc.  It was interesting to beat the summer heat and work for TAPMI. I was also attending Lions Club meetings and visiting some tourist places in TN like Vellore (Golden Temple), Salem (Yercaud and Rasipuram) and so on....

Having heard and read about the May 22 air crash in Mangalore, I was saddened.  It was a very unfortunate bad landing by the Pilot (a foreigner) in the early morning.  Any amount of obituaries and enquiries cannot bring back those innocent victims or solace to their families. Management, Govt., and Staff Associations may have thousands of explanations but the fact remains that there was some serious human negligence.

When it comes to booking the passengers, these Airlines have so many procedures. Most irritating part is checking of identity by security guards and all sundry personnel.  Then the body frisking even after stripping the passenger of any types of items in pockets like keys, identity cards, mobile phones, wallets, and so on.  Even in the hand baggage, you are not allowed to carry water or milk, eatables or battery fitted gadgets, sprays or perfumes, etc. Many a times, the passengers are treated like pseudo criminals or terrorists. I was only watching some foreigners merrily taking photographs in one of the lounges. Announcements are not made to the comfort of the customers - domestic or foreign, literate or illiterate, children or adults.  They are done more like rituals with peculiar accent. Delays are never explained or rarely apologised. 

In today's information and transparent world, the customer too has a right to know who is the pilot or crew members.  What is their track record?  Do they have full knowledge of geography or topography besides of course the technology. Surprisingly, in the last fortnight or so, we have been hearing about incident after incident about mishaps in the air travel in India. As if it is not enough, train and bus accidents are also being reported quite often.  All the men (women included) or organisations providing these services should be careful and value the precious lives of their passengers. Laws should be made severe and stringent for this.

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