Taking note of frequent instances of unruly behaviour by air passengers in which pilots and cabin crew members failed to take appropriate action, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has asked the head of operations of all the airlines to sensitise their pilots, cabin crew and director-in-flight services on the topic of handling unruly air passengers using appropriate means.

The direction came after a shocking incident came to light wherein a man urinated on an elderly female co-passenger in a drunken state on a New York-New Delhi flight in November last year. Days after this incident was reported, another similar case came to light in which a drunk male passenger allegedly urinated on a female passenger's blanket on a Paris-Delhi Air India flight in December last year.

The DGCA has noticed a few incidents of unruly behaviour and inappropriate conduct by the passengers onboard a flight, wherein it has been observed that the post holders, pilots and cabin crew failed to take appropriate actions, said the advisory issued by the aviation regulator on Friday.

Any non-compliance towards the applicable regulations shall be dealt with strictly and invite enforcement action, DGCA said in the advisory issued to 'Head of Operations of Scheduled Airlines' with regard to handling of unruly passengers onboard and respective responsibilities as per the regulations.

Non-action or inappropriate action or omission by the airlines towards such untoward incidents has tarnished the image of air travel in different segments of the society, the DGCA noted in its advisory.

Individual's responsibilities for handling of unruly passenger have been specified under various provisions of Aircraft Rules, 1937, DGCA regulations, and circulars and manuals of airlines approved and accepted by DGCA.

On Thursday, the DGCA had said that the conduct of Air India was unprofessional and has led to a systemic failure in the case related to a Mumbai-based businessman urinating on female co-passenger onboard an AI flight on November 26, 2022.

Observing that provisions related to handling of an unruly passengers onboard have not been complied with, the DGCA had asked why enforcement action should not be taken against the concerned executives of Air India for dereliction of their regulatory obligations in the matter.

The regulator also issued show-cause notices to senior Air India executives, and pilots and cabin crew of the said flight after receiving a report from the airline on the incident.