Controversial Shiv Sena MP Ravindra Gaikwad today offered an apology in the Lok Sabha for assaulting an Air India official after which all major airlines debarred him from flying on their aircraft.
Gaikwad, however, made it clear that he was apologising to the Parliament and not to the Air India official “whose misbehaviour triggered the entire incident”.
“I apologise to the Parliament if my behaviour as an MP has hurt the respect of the House,.I apologise to the House, not to the AI staff,” Gaikwad said.
Gaikwad accused the Air India official of misbehaving with him after he asked for the complaint book to lodge his complaint for being denied the business class seat despite having the ticket for the same.
“When I told him that I am an MP he ridiculed me by asking if I was Narendra Modi,” the Shiv Sena MP said.
“He grabbed me by collar after which I pushed him,” he added.
Gaikwad also said that the airlines have barred him from flying while the Air India official was roaming scot-free.
“The AI staff who misbehaved with me is roaming scot-free. But here I am with curbs from all airlines,” Ravindra Gaikwad said.
Interestingly, Gaikwad did not say a word on hitting the Air India official “25 times” with his slipper, something he bragged about immediately after the incident.
Ravindra Gaikwad also accused the media of launching a trial against him without any investigation.
“What is my crime? What have I done that a media trial has been launched against me without any investigation,” Gaikwad said.
He also questioned the police for applying section 308 of IPC (attempt to muder) against him.
Gaikwad also claimed that an Air India hostess, who was present during the entire incident, later said that the Air India official’s misconduct triggered the entire incident.
After Gaikwad’s statement, the Shiv Sena members gheraoed Civil Aviation minister Asok Gajapathi Raju demanding the withdrawal of the decision taken by major airlines for not allowing Gaikwad to board their aircraft.
The minister, however, said that Gaikwad was a passenger inside the aircraft, that airline security was paramount and could not be compromised.
The comments led to uproar from Shiv Sena MPs who tried to heckle the Civil Aviation minister inside Lok Sabha after his reply. They gheraoed the minister and started raising slogans, leading to an intervention by senior ministers like Rajnath Singh, Smirti Irani and members from other parties who tried to escort him out safely from the House.
Meanwhile, Lok Sabha Speaker Sumitra Mahajan is holding a meeting with Home minister Rajnath Singh, Civil Aviation minister Raju and Shiv Sena MPs regarding the entire fiasco.