Indian couple marry in the sky and defy Covid-19


An Indian couple chartered a plane to get married in the clouds in front of 161 guests, in violation of anti-Covid restrictions, press reported on Monday.

India's civil aviation authority has ordered an investigation and suspended the crew of the aircraft, official sources said.

Most states in India - which exceeded the threshold of 300,000 coronavirus deaths on Monday - allow the presence of a maximum of 50 guests at weddings.

The couple - whose identity has not been revealed - said "yes" to each other on Sunday when the SpiceJet plane, which was going to Bangalore (south), flew over the temple of Minakshi, in Madurai, in the state of Tamil Nadu (south), said the Hindustan Times newspaper.

Videos and photos of the festivities on board, showing guests with flowers around their necks and taking selfies, were posted on social media, but could not immediately be verified by AFP.

Contrary to civil aviation rules, hardly any of them wore a sanitary mask and social distancing rules were largely ignored.

According to the press, the General Directorate of Civil Aviation has asked Spicejet to take action against the newlyweds and their guests. They could be banned from passenger flights.

"The agent and the guest passengers were informed in detail, in writing and orally, of the social distancing and safety rules to be followed in accordance with the Covid guidelines, at the airport and on board the aircraft throughout the trip. “, defended a spokesperson for Spicejet to Indian media.

“Despite repeated requests and reminders, the passengers did not follow the guidelines and the company will take appropriate action in accordance with the rules,” he added.

Several Indian states have imposed strict lockdowns for the past six weeks as India is hit by a devastating wave of Covid-19, which has overwhelmed the hospital system.