Hyderabad: The Shiv Sena continued its support of its unruly MP Ravindra Gaikwad on Thursday by attempting to assault aviation minister P. Ashok Gajapathi Raju in the Lok Sabha.
Mr Gaikwad, who has been widely condemned for hitting an Air India employee because he was not given a business class seat, and has subsequently been banned from flying by six airlines, had made a lengthy defence of his action in the House.
Reading from a prepared note he said it was all hype created by the media that he slapped the AI official. Instead, he said, it was the AI official who manhandled and was rude to him.
He said he was prepared to apologise to Parliament for his behaviour but he will not apologise to Air India or the official who abused and manhandled him. “What sin have I committed? How can there be a travel ban forced on me? Please tell me what crime I have committed,” he said.
The aviation minister said in his reply that Mr Gaikwad had written him a letter giving his version of the incident which he has forwarded to the police and it would be part of the inquiry now.
“It is a process of law, and let the law take its own course,” Mr Raju said. He said the aviation ministry cannot compromise on the safety of passengers, indicating that the ban on Mr Gaikwad by the airlines would not be lifted as of now....