Mumbai-based airline Jet Airways suspends one of its expatriate pilots after allegations from passengers surfaced that he had assaulted a woman and verbally abused another passenger with racial remarks during a domestic flight. The airline said it is taking the incident seriously and had initiated an investigation to uncover details about the incident.
According to India Times, last April 3, a Jet Airways pilot responsible for a Chandigarh-Mumbai flight was suspended from duty after one woman alleged that he assaulted her. On April 6, another passenger with witnesses said he hurled racial insults at a passenger on a domestic flight. A third incident alleged he had abused a disabled passenger. The expatriate Jet Airways pilot was immediately suspended and removed from its rosters and the airline's investigation would ensure corrective action would be taken against the pilot.
Cricket player Harbhajan Singh brought the April 6 incident to light to social media network Twitter after an acquaintance told him about it. In his tweet, he said he wants to remove the captain from India because "no one dares to call us bloody Indians," according to his statement noted by Times of India.
Harbhajan also tweeted about the pilot about allegedly having assaulted a woman and dropped the pilot's name as Bernd Hoesslin. Harbhajan said in his tweets that Jet Airways should be ashamed of their roster.
According to an official statement by the airline, it has zero tolerance against employees of all levels regarding racist actions and physical and sexual assaults. The official statement also said the airline launched a full-fledged investigation and it has gathered witnesses to work with "concerned departments and agencies" to bring the issue to light and give it proper closure.
The National Aviators Guild of India had raised initial concerns regarding the behavior of expatriate pilots in the airline's roster. According to NAG, Jet Airways is treating Indian pilots as "second class" compared to expatriate pilots.