Passenger strangles wife, hurls abuses at cabin crew amid 7-hour panic attack on Newark-Mumbai flight

Indian media quoted a witness saying that the man 'swung between bouts of calm and rage'

By Web Desk

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Photo: PTI
Photo: PTI

Published: Fri 19 May 2023, 12:20 PM

In yet another case of passengers misbehaving onboard, an elderly man caused ruckus on an Air India flight as he had a panic attack for over 7 hours.

Indian media quoted a witness saying that the man 'swung between bouts of calm and rage'.


On the AI-144 from Newark to Mumbai, a business class passenger seemed to be having a panic attack. The witness said that after about three hours in the flight, the passenger was seen seated in a different seat and was arguing with a flight attendant. The fight went on for about an hour, the witness added.

A short while later, the man began causing a scene by shouting in panic and kept asking the cabin crew to allow him to disembark. The flight attendants kept trying to pacify him to no avail.


The man hurled abuses and kept screaming at flight attendants, asking them to open the door. Some cabin crew, that weren't on shift yet, even came out in plainclothes in an attempt to ease the situation.

At one point, the 6-foot-tall man reportedly attempted to strangle his wife, who then hid in the economy class, fearing her husband.

Around seven hours later, after multiple attempts to pacify the passenger, two doctors on board administered the man with sedatives while cabin crew held the passenger in place, the witness said.

The Captain of the flight later made an announcement thanking the two doctors on board.

The airline has issued no statement on the incident as of yet.

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