FourFourSeconds ago, a man flew from Chennai to Mumbai and landed in the Indian capital.

    In India, you’re considered a ‘suspected terrorist’ if you have a criminal record.

    In an attempt to get him to leave, the airline sent out an SMS, saying, “If you are a suspected terrorist, you will not be allowed to board.”

    It was followed by an email from Air India saying, “This passenger is being escorted to Mumbai.”

    The man then allegedly left the plane in a taxi and made it to a police station where he was questioned.

    He was released on bail a few days later and has not been charged with any crime.

    But what about the other passengers?

    The passenger who allegedly flew from Mumbai to Delhi was later identified as Srinivas Kuchibhotla, a businessman from Chennai.

    His passport shows that he was in India for six months last year.

    He is one of the five passengers who have been charged.

    Another two passengers have also been charged, including a man who was arrested in Mumbai and later released.

    In a press conference, Air India said the other two passengers, who are from Mumbai and Delhi, have been identified and have been booked in Mumbai’s Thane district for further questioning.

    “We are investigating the circumstances under which the passenger boarded this flight,” Air India spokesperson Ramesh said.

    The airline added that they have received several reports of passengers travelling from India to Dubai in the past.

    “The company has also been in touch with local authorities in these cases.”

    What is ‘sUSPICIOUS’ about this man?

    In December, a British national called Khalid Masood was arrested by the British police in the UK after he stabbed three people in Manchester.

    Masood had previously been detained in the US and was allegedly planning to join ISIS. 

    Masood’s family said he was a ‘good’ Muslim and a ‘wonderful’ father.

    In fact, he was described by the FBI as being a “good Muslim”.

    But it is not clear whether he was an ISIS sympathiser.

    In December, it was reported that the FBI has been investigating Masood’s background since 2014.

    In 2016, Masood wrote on Facebook that he “had a mission to fight the American Empire”. 

    Masoud had been arrested by Scotland Yard in December 2016.

    He was said to have written on Facebook “I am the most wanted man in the world.”

    What does this mean for other passengers from India? 

    There have been many cases of suspected terrorism cases from India that have ended in convictions.

    The UK Home Office said in a statement on Friday that it is “working closely with Indian authorities to ensure they are able to identify and take action against those individuals involved in terrorist activity.”

    “We do not want people to be misled about the law, or to think that we are in any way going to stop anyone from travelling,” it added. 

    “Our priority is always to help passengers and their families to ensure their safety and to protect our nation.”


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