Passengers on a Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) flight revolted this week after being forced to endure a 2-hour delay to accomodate a pair of tardy VIPs.
During they delay, a group of fed-up passengers formed a blockade at the airline gate, preventing the two gentlemen, identified as former Pakistani interior minister Rehman Malik and parliament member Dr. Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, from boarding the flight, reported the BBC.
The incident was captured on shaky mobile phone video cameras. As Mr. Malik approached the aircraft from the jetway, the enraged passengers appear to demand an apology for causing such a lengthy delay for the short flight from Karachi to the nation’s capital in Islamabad.
“You should apologise to these passengers!” demanded the group’s apparent leader. “It is your fault [we are delayed], sir. You should be ashamed of yourself!”
He continued, ” You are not a minister anymore, and even if you are, we don’t care! We don’t care anymore. You people have to become humans!”
“We’ve taken it for 68 years!” shouted another passenger in reference the country’s 1947 Independence from Great Britain. “We are not taking it anymore!”
In a final insult, one passenger screams, “Shame on you, you dog!”
Vankwani made it farther than Malik. He actually got to his seat, before the another group of passengers compelled him to leave the aircraft.
Pakistan’s national airline has a reputation for poor performance. Data from Flightstats.com show that just 36% of its flights took off on time over the past two months.
According to the New York Times, altercation, it’s common practice for the state-owned airline to delay flights to accommodate tardy politicians and senior bureaucrats. The practice is seen as a cause for its weak on-time rating.
A day after being confronted by angry passengers, Malik denied being the reason for the two-hour delay and even went as far as to blame the airline for failing to provide adequate security, the New York Times reported.
Pakistan International Airlines claimed that an hour and half of the delay was due to a mechanical fault, but could not explain the rest of the lost time, the Times reported.
Business Insider reached out to PIA for comment and will provide and update if there’s any new information.
Take a look at the video of Mr. Malik leaving the flight:
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