BENGALURU: A filmmaker from Mumbai is devastated and angry over the damage caused to his drone worth nearly Rs 2 lakh when it was transported on Sunday (November 14) by an AirAsia India flight. 30-year-old Sabit Tisekar has written to the Nodal officer of the airline and is still awaiting for some form of redressal.
Tisekar had flown from Mumbai to Bengaluru for a shoot from November 11 to 13 and left from KIA on November 14 by the airline’s 6.50 pm flight (15 1561) to Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport.
Narrating the incident to The New Indian Express over phone from Mumbai, the film maker said that he wanted to carry his drone as cabin luggage but was not permitted to do so by the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) staff at the Bengaluru airport. “I was asked to send it as check-in baggage only. So I went back to the AirAsia counter and explained my problem to the staffer. I told them it was breakable and was worried about what would happen to it during baggage handling as luggage is usually shoved inside the flight. I was given an assurance it would be taken care of and my consignment was marked as `Fragile’ too by the staffer.”
The same drone had been transported from Mumbai to Bengaluru by Tikait’s crew member on an Air India flight. “The CISF there had permitted it on board but the CISF in Bengaluru is not permitting it. How come there is no uniformity in rules?” he asks.
After collecting his baggage from Terminal One at Mumbai, Tisekar checked it to learn that the lens of the camera attached to the drone had been damaged. “This renders the drone useless. I had paid upto Rs 2 lakh to buy additional propellers and batteries to it,” he explained.
Tisekar filed a complaint at the AirAsia India office at Mumbai airport and later took to twitter to explain his plight.
An official statement from AirAsia India said, "We advise all guests to be aware of the regulations and ensure adherence to Bureau of Civil Aviation Security regulations, which require all drones to be carried in check-in baggage. We also request and advise all guests to be mindful of potential damage and ensure that their items are securely packed. In this process, we also take an undertaking from guests advising them that the airline is not responsible for damage to such items while being transported through the airport, security and with other check-in baggage in the aircraft."