Flight To New York Turns Around After A Dead Bat Is Found In Business Class

Air India flight 105 from Delhi to Newark returned to India early Thursday morning after a bat carcass was spotted in row 8 of business class.

After pilots identified that this wasn’t simply Air India’s standard business class catering, they worked with air traffic control to dump fuel over an unpopulated area in order to prepare for a return to the airport where they offloaded passengers, removed the bat, and arranged for a deep clean of the aircraft – thus indicating what it takes to get a thoroughly cleaned aircraft from Air India.

With India on the back side of one of the world’s worst battles with Covid-19, as well as being home to a variant of concern, there’s a special sensitivity around dead bats – even as the world has been unable to identify a species that the SARS CoV-2 virus jumped to first from bats before spreading to humans, lending greater weight to questions around a lab leak as the source of the pandemic.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I thought flight from india to USA was banned until certain time due to covid cases there

  2. Yea, that makes perfect sense. Fly back and cover it up first and then let all the people exposed fly on without proper precautions so they can incubate and spread whatever they caught to a few thousand other people before it’s discovered. Thanks Air India.

  3. “Whoever said one person can’t change the world never ate an undercooked bat”


    @Gary, I think you said you live in Austin, so you’ve probably heard UT’s motto. What a sad/hilarious contrast.

  4. @ Gary — Sounds like someone’s emotional support bat died after eating Air India’s catering.

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