Airlines Will Ask You To Deboard If Masks Not Worn Properly (New Passengers Rules)

The DGCA has made mask wearing compulsory inside airport premises and onboard planes.

The government has toughened its stance on non compliant plane passengers amidst a concerning spike in active Covid cases across the country.

Mask wearing and social distancing are both compulsory at all times within airport premises and inside a plane.

Delhi High Court Justice C Hari Shankar had to pass the order after witnessing first hand the stubborn behavior of passengers on an Air India flight. Many refused to pull their masks up over the chin, rendering the very purpose of the mask redundant.

“Unruly Passengers”

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has broadened the definition of “unruly passengers” to include people who do not follow flight instructions on mask and PPE wearing. They will be flagged as an unruly passenger and be taken off the flight before departure.

These passengers will also risk being added to a no-fly list which bars the person from flying for a period of 3 months to a lifetime ban.

The New Rules

One must not only wear a mask, but wear a mask properly, as in keeping the nose and mouth covered. If one fails to do that they will receive a few initial warnings, but if this is not heeded the passenger will be deboarded. 

It is not just the plane where a person has to don a mask. 

They will have to keep covered straight from entry to the airport till the time of leaving the premises where Central Industrial Security Forces (CISF) and other airport authorities will be regularly checking for defaulters.

Consequences

People who flout mask wearing and social distancing norms inside the airport could risk being handed over to security agencies after initial warnings and requests.

The only exception under the mandate are those for whom a mask impairs their ability to breathe in a clinical condition. 

Covid Resurgence in India

The crackdown comes after a brief spell in the last few months where the curve was flattening in Corona cases. But this led to complacency and reckless behavior as more and more public spaces began to open and restrictions were dwindling.

People were brazenly commuting without masks and social distancing norms went for a toss.

India is currently the third highest in the world in terms of active cases, after the United States and Brazil. 

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