A very disturbing incident happened today, 29th December 2010. I missed my flight from Kolkatta to New Delhi. Some thing which never happened before.
I had attended the All India Conference of AIBSNLEA at Kolkatta and addressed it in the capacity of Convener, JAC. I spoke about one hour on the major issues facing the BSNL Workers and about the united struggles which stopped the disinvestment of BSNL as also privatisation. Since I had to catch the 20.55 flight to New Delhi, along with Saibal Sen Gupta, Circle Secretary, Kolkata Telephones, started for air-port by 18.50 hours. It was only about half an hour journey from the conference site to Air-port, but due to heavy traffic, it took more than one and half hours and reached the air-port by 20.20 hours. I rushed to the check-in point, but it was closed. I requested the supervisor to contact the flight and ensure by journey. Of course, she contacted the pilot, but quick came the reply that the flight doors are already closed and nothing could be done. The supervisor told me that strict instructions are there to close the check-in before 40 minutes of the flight time.
Nothing could be done. Hence I went to the counter and got my ticket changed to next day morning flight by giving the additional charges. I saw two other families there who also shared the same fate of missing the flight.
I contacted Com.Saibal, who returned to air-port and took me back to the IQ. By the time I reached the IQ, I got an SMS from the airline company that passengers should check-in before a minimum of 40 minutes. Why didn’t they intimate earlier? Even if a bit late less than half an hour also, the staff of the airlines will be waiting to take you immediately. assisting at every point to ensure your journey. But this time the staff were not at all interested and they gave a curt reply that it is closed.
Is it that they have taken new passengers and that there was no vacancy? It can also happen as it has happened earlier. But the main point is that in a busy city like Kolkatta, it is better that you start for Railway Station/ Air-Port, sufficiently early so that you can catch the train or the flight and not to miss same.
Some people like me learn only through hard experience!