The Cochin International Airport here witnessed some tense moments on Saturday as passengers of an Abu Dhabi-bound Air India Express flight protested against the inordinate delay in its departure.
Airport sources said the flight IX 419, operating in the Kochi- Abu Dhabi sector, was scheduled to take of with 160 passengers on board at 9.25 p.m. on Friday.
However, the aircraft could reach here from Mumbai only by 11.45 p.m. as it had already encountered some engineering problems, they said.
Later, the service was re-scheduled to Saturday morning and the passengers, who had already completed their check-in formalities by the time, were subsequently accommodated in nearby hotels, they said.
The situation worsened on Saturday when the passengers, who had been brought to the security hall as early as by 8.30 a.m., were told of a further delay in its departure. The annoyed passengers started protesting against the “callous attitude” of the airline and demanded an immediate resumption of the service.
The protest lasted a few hours and the issue was resolved by afternoon with the aircraft finally taking off by 2.20 p.m.