Biman Bangladesh Airlines made claims that during a four-hour-long hold-up at the Kolkata Airport runway, the passengers of the Biman plane were denied permission to disembark on the ground. But the authority at Kolkata airport denies these claims.
Due to a technical glitch faced by a plane of Biman Airlines which was due for Dhaka on July 18, passengers were left on board suffering without any food or air conditioner, as per claims of Biman.
Source from the airlines said that Flight BG 396 remained stuck with around 150 onboard in Kolkata from 9:00 pm local time on July 18 at the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport as the Boeing 737 aircraft suffered a technical glitch in its landing gear.
Earlier Zahid Hossain, the Managing Director and CEO of Biman, said that the passengers were not allowed to disembark by the Kolkata airport authorities.
During those four hours of being stranded, the passengers of the flight were left with no food or air conditioning. Due to the ongoing repair work, they were unable to serve food or turn on the AC, said the Biman MD.
The flight landed in Dhaka at 1:42 am on Tuesday, July 19, after being fixed.
The authorities at the airport countered it by saying that there was no provision that prevents or disallows boarded passengers to deplane.
“But it has to be requested and it has costs. The request was never made by the Biman pilot or their ground duty manager posted at the airport,” states the authorities at Kolkata airport.
They also added, “Food was stored in the aircraft as per our information. In the worst case scenario, if there is insufficient food or water, they can be delivered from local agencies like Taj Stats on short notice”.
Passengers who went to India for medical treatments were the first to experience discomfort due to the unavailability of air conditioning facilities in the aircraft for lack of ground electricity.
According to the statement of the Kolkata airport authorities, the Air India ground handling team is responsible for providing support to Biman at Kolkata and they could have connected the Ground-based power units to the aircraft to power the AC, but the Biman pilot did not make any such request.
On 24th July, Tahera Khandaker, a Biman spokesperson said that due to some restrictions on the part of the Kolkata airport authorities, Biman Passengers were unable to deplane. However, she made no comments regarding the airport’s claims about the Biman pilot not making the aforementioned requests.