Take A Photo On A Flight In India, Your Airline May Lose The Right To Operate The Route For Two Weeks

With India rounding towards 5 million lab-confirmed cases of Covid-19, hundreds of millions of cases based on antibody testing and where lockdown may have increased virus spread, and most foreign nationals banned from entering the country, the government has chosen an odd time to care about the scourge of inflight photography.

The government is cracking down on inflight photography (HT: One Mile at a Time) And any violation of the rule will mean the airline loses the route it happened on for two weeks.

This was apparently prompted by news crews showing up to follow Bollywood star Kangana Ranaut on IndiGo flight 264 from Chandigarh to Mumbai on Wednesday. They crowded the aisle of the plane while it was taxiing so they could try to talk to her, and that’s a bad look during Covid-19.

The government says inflight photography may “result in compromise in maintaining the highest standards of safety” but this isn’t a Covid-19 regulation, it was a pre-existing rule in India. And it seems more related to charges that have been brought against passengers taking pictures of female flight attendants, who are also charged with ‘outraging the modesty of a womn’.

In this case simple enforcement of no standing in the aisles while a plane is on an active taxiway would suffice to address the issue at hand. And it seems as though there are more important safety issues to focus on in India, such as Air India requiring pilots to operate flights after they’ve been fired, pilots failing breathalyzers, and pilots declaring fuel emergencies just to get a jump in the queue to land.

Especially since photography – historically banned by many airlines in the U.S., but rarely enforced – has been one of the best ways of holding airlines accountable for poor treatment of customers, and for violations of their own rules.

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. India is going to hell in a handbasket with Modi at the wheel, he appears to be following his fan boi Trump.

    100,000 (& rising) cases a day, 1200 (& rising) deaths a day, and any covid news or government effort appears to be relegated to the footnotes, well behind the bollywood scandal of the day, and the right wing govt’s outrage at every stray critical comment made by anyone (& especially Bollywood B-stars).

    All this while many hospitals are running out of oxygen and basic gear to treat covid patients.

    India is a circus, seemingly run by clowns.

  2. Distraction tactics from the proto fascist BJP govt to distract the mob from the mess they have made of the economy and the coronavirus response

  3. I am an Indian, thought I will get that out of the way.

    These rules are simply a reminder, nothing new. Sadly, many Indians don’t respect boundaries and privacy, and that job is being outsourced to airlines now. It is nothing political. Quite similar culturally to China, based on my limited experience there.

    Secondly, there are a few airports in India which are active Air Force bases where photography is banned, yet people take photos and post them online (on a related note, the site of 6 modern fighter jets taking off with full burners on, within seconds, is an awesome sight!).

  4. Modi and his fascist supporters in the RSS and BJP are messing up what made India India and riding on the economic coattails of what PV N Rao and Manmohan Singh unleashed; and the Modi government is taking advantage of everything they can to show Indians “who is with us” and “who is against us”.

    The Modi government is on the side of their Bollywood supporter: Kangana Ranaut. As with many a government, it too selectively enforces laws and selectively ignores laws; and it now has the Indian judges to make the Indian judiciary nearly as messed up as Pakistan. Then again, Modi’s version of India is but a wannabe Hindu version of Pakistan.

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