SpiceJet Flight Attendants Accuse Airline Of ‘Strip Search’, Latter Says “It’s A Company Policy”

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SpiceJet Flight Attendants Accuse Airline Of ‘Strip Search’, Latter Says “It’s A Company Policy”

We talk of crimes like rapes and molestations being committed at generally secluded areas but what about the harassments and molestations which are also taking place in the workplace and such big companies like SpiceJet? The flight attendants of the airline are asking the same question as they are forced to appear for a ‘strip search’ after deboarding from their flights for past few days.

On Saturday morning, female flight attendants working with the SpiceJet were allegedly strip-searched at the Chennai airport by the airline’s security personnel.

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The news came to light after a video of the airline’s flight attendants complaining about being strip searched came out. One of them was even heard saying that a woman who was on her periods, was asked to remove sanitary napkin from her handbag by the security personnel. As per the reports, in the video, one of the flight attendants said, “Someone touched me inappropriately, made me feel very uncomfortable. I was naked.”

Reportedly, the search was carried out because the airline suspected that the flight attendants duped cash collected on board through the sale of items during the flight journey. During the strip search, they were not only manhandled but also not allowed to the washroom after deboarding.

One of them told a media agency, “We air hostesses are stripped naked over the last three days and women personnel touch us inappropriately. A colleague in her period was asked to remove her sanitary napkin.”

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“Is this the policy to remove your sanitary pad, touch private parts? We cabin crew are hired majorly for safety reasons of the fellow passengers but what about our respect and safety? We talk about rape and molestation, is this any less?” one woman said.

Another woman added, “On informing the base official that I wasn’t comfortable and I’m on my menses she still checked my panty; they pressed my breasts. I’ve lost my self-respect… Cabin crew is the brand ambassador. We are humiliated as if we have done some robbery.”

SpiceJet’s senior vice president, Kamal Hingorani, who heads in-flight services said that the strict search was performed on the suspicion that cabin crew was taking cash and company material.

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He clarified, in a company email, “We have therefore been compelled to carry out spot checks, which in any case is a company policy. It is in all our interests that the ‘black sheep’ amongst us is identified and removed so that honest employees are not blamed.”

In a statement, the airlines said, “The search essentially is the same as what any passenger goes through at any of the Indian airports while going through security check.”

They also confirmed that after having received a tip-off, airline’s security team did carry out searches at some of its stations on March 28 and 29.

A senior Spicejet official from Chennai told that it’s a ‘baseless allegation’.

Published by Shruti Kumari on 31 Mar 2018

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