Twitterati have exploded in anger after India’s private airline company, GoAir, sacked one of its senior pilots for his alleged tweet, calling Prime Minister Narendra Modi an ‘idiot.’ This was after a GoAir spokesperson said on Saturday that it had terminated the employment contract of the senior pilot, Miki Malik.
“GoAir has terminated the services of the Captain with immediate effect,” news agency PTI quoted an airline’s spokesperson as saying. Captain Malik is believed to have removed the offensive tweet before locking his Twitter account.
The spokesperson, however, said that GoAir did not associate itself with personal views expressed by its employees. But, the airline has failed to explain why it had chosen to sack its senior pilot even though it did not associate itself with the views expressed by him.
In his controversial tweet, Captain Malik had written on Thursday, “PM is an idiot. You can call me same in return. It’s ok. I don’t matter. Bcoz I am not PM. But PM is an idiot. Period.”
Captain Malik had later tweeted an apology the same day, “I apologise for my tweets about PM, other offensive tweets which may have hurt sentiments of anyone associated. I convey that GoAir is not associated with any of my tweets directly or indirectly as they were personal views.”
Netizens were quick to clarify that the tweet by Captain Malik had named Prime Minister Narendra Modi and used the ‘idiot’ jibe only against a PM. As expected, furious netizens took to social media to express their outrage over the intolerance shown by GoAir towards an Indian Air Force veteran.
GoAir sacks Pilot who made derogatory remarks on PM
Bhakts: Atleast they didn’t Behead.
— Nehr_who? (@Nher_who) January 9, 2021
GoAir sacks senior pilot who said PM is an Idiot. GOI will also file case invoking the Official Secret Act
— Joy (@Joydas) January 9, 2021
So @goairlinesindia sacked a senior pilot, who happens to be an airforce veteran for calling a PM idiot. Though he didn’t name anyone, GoAir somehow assumed the obvious. Shame on @goairlinesindia and it’s a given, never flying with you again. pic.twitter.com/qygqVdAJDb
— Tu Kaun Main Khwamakha (@nazmaaman) January 9, 2021
*Twitter suspends Trump’s account*
Bhakts: Twitter is suppressing freedom of speech.
*GoAir suspends pilot for calling PM idiot*
Bhakts: Well done. This should be lesson for everyone.
— Nimo Tai 2.0 (@Cryptic_Miind) January 9, 2021
— Vishselva4 (@vishselva4) January 9, 2021
Ironically, supporters of PM Modi on Saturday reacted with disgust over Twitter’s decision to permanently ban Donald Trump for using the platform to incite violence. BJP leaders had likened the decision to curbing free speech.