Mumbai: National carrier Air India on Sunday grounded its director (operations) captain A.K. Kathpalia after he allegedly failed the mandatory pre-flight breathalyser test in Delhi, a senior airline official said.
Mr Kathpalia was to operate the Air India’s AI-111 flight to London from New Delhi on Sunday afternoon. He was earlier grounded for a similar offence.
“We have grounded captain A.K. Kathpalia as he failed twice in the breath analyser test. He was to operate the London flight from New Delhi, but he failed to clear the pre-flight alcohol test,” the official said.
“He was given another chance, but the second test was also found positive following which he was grounded,” the official said.
Air India spokesperson was unavailable for comments on the matter. Rule 24 of the aircraft rules prohibits crew members from partaking any alcoholic drink 12 hours prior to the commencement of a flight, and it is mandatory for him or her to undergo an alcohol test both before and after operating a flight.
It’s not the first time that Mr Kathpalia has been found to be alcohol positive. Earlier, his flying licence was suspended in 2017 for three months by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) for allegedly skipping the breath analyser test before a flight. He was subsequently removed from the post of executive director, operations. However, he was later appointed to the post of director (operations) in Air India Ltd for a period of five years....