Right from getting married in PPE kits to tying the knot in hospitals, Indian couples have gone above and beyond during COVID-19 for their nuptials. Amidst this, Rakesh and Dakshina, a couple from Madurai, Tamil Nadu decided to get married mid-flight as the lockdown in the state continued.
The couple booked a chartered plane on May 23 from Madurai to Bangalore to perform some of the rituals in the plane. Their plane hovered over Madurai's Meenakshi Amman Temple as they completed the rituals. They had 161 guests in attendance, and the video has been uploaded on Twitter.
Check it out here:
"The crew of the flight has been off-rostered and the airline has been directed to lodge a complaint with relevant authorities against those not following Covid-appropriate behaviour," a senior DGCA official said, adding that the aviation safety regulator was conducting an inquiry into the incident “and shall take strict action". It has also issued a show-cause notice to SpiceJet and sought a detailed report on the incident.
Tamil Nadu extended its lockdown on May 22 after reporting 36,000 fresh COVID-19 cases amid the surge of the second wave in the country. However, ahead of the complete lockdown, the state also announced a one-day relaxation period where stand-alone shops were allowed to function. As far as weddings go, a gathering of more than 50 people is not allowed
In the video, Rakesh is seen putting a mangalsutra around Dakshina's neck while both of them are wearing wedding garlands.
Since the couple was onboard a SpiceJet flight, the airline has released a statement for the same and said, "A SpiceJet Boeing 737 was chartered by a travel agent in Madurai on May 23, 2021, for a group of passengers for a joy ride post their wedding. The client was clearly briefed on Covid guidelines to be followed and denied permission for any activity to be performed on board. The approval for this flight was taken as a joy ride for the wedding group."
"The agent and the guest passengers were briefed in detail, both in writing as well as verbally, on social distancing and safety norms to be followed as per Covid guidelines both at the airport and onboard the aircraft throughout the journey. The group was repeatedly briefed on the safety norms to be followed by the operating cabin crew and advised to follow the protocols laid down by DGCA including restrictions on photography and videography. Despite repeated requests and reminders, the passengers did not follow Covid guidelines and the airline is taking appropriate action as per rules,” the spokesperson added.
(With inputs from The Indian Express).