PUNE: Around 18 passengers of Alliance Air Nashik-Pune flight were stranded at Nashik airport for hours as the runway at Pune airport was closed from 10.30 am to 5.30 pm due to maintenance of the runway. They later had to travel to Pune by road. The air service between these two cities started on October 27 under the Regional Connectivity Scheme (RCS).
The incident happened on Saturday morning. One of the passengers, Kemburu Sateesh Kuma, highlighted the issue on the social media and said that the passengers were dumped at Nashik airport by Air India.
“This is the pathetic condition of Air India travellers. 25 passengers were dumped in Nasik by telling PUNE airport got closed. After a great fight with airlines, they arrange 4 cars for all these people. How come these people will travel to PUNE in 4 cars?” Kuma tweeted.
Speaking on the issue, spokesperson of Alliance Air said, “The flight had to be cancelled as previous day delays of the other flights lead to less resting time for the crew which had to be given minimum resting hours as per the regulations. Ironically, the flight was coming in the NOTAM (Notice to Airmen) time zone after the crew regulatory time was complied with and therefore had to be cancelled. But all passengers were given surface transport and they reached Pune successfully.”
However, according to the spokesperson, the flight arrived from Hyderabad in Nashik and it was already delayed. The flight was scheduled to depart from Hyderabad at 6.05 am and arrived in Nashik at 8 am. But today (Saturday), it took off from Hyderabad at 8 am reached at 10 am to Nashik. There were 28 passengers who had booked tickets on this flight and out of these, 10 were given a refund.
Every Saturday, the Pune airport is closed from 10.30 am to 5.30 pm due to maintenance of the runway. This is a routine procedure and none of the airlines operate at that time. The Pune airport comes under Defence land and the Indian Air Force always conducts routine practice.