By Ashoke Raj
New Delhi [India], June 24 (ANI): A UAE-based Indian businessman who travelled from Amritsar to Dubai as the sole passenger on the Air India international flight said he felt like a 'Maharaja'.
The businessman and philanthropist SP Singh Oberoi who took the three-hour flight on Wednesday found that he was the only passenger in the aircraft.
"I took my flight from Amritsar to Dubai by Air India (AI-929) on June 23 at around 4 am. I was very lucky to be the only passenger on the entire flight. I feel like a Maharaja during my travel," Oberoi told ANI.
Oberoi who holds a ten-year golden visa and operates a business in Dubai said that when he bought the ticket for the Air India flight dirham 750, he never thought that he will have experience of flying in a chartered plane.
"I was treated very well by the entire crew and was photographed in an empty plane, I took pictures with the crew and pilots of the aircraft," Oberoi said recounting his memories from around a three-hour flight to Dubai.
Without any co-passengers, Oberoi said he found the journey extremely boring and he even resorted to counting the number of seats and windows of the Airbus 320 aircraft to pass time. He also measured the length of the aircraft by steps.
"I missed the usually 'Jo Bole So Nihaal' and 'Sat Sri Akal' chants that passengers from Punjab usually raise during take-off and landing of the aircraft," he said.
Oberoi had been refused permission by Air India for boarding the flight but after the intervention of the Ministry of Civil Aviation he was allowed to do so.
"I was carrying all travel documents including authorized UAE full vaccinations proof. I finally boarded the flight after the intervention of Hardeep Singh Puri's ministry." Oberoi said.
He further said, "If I get a chance to travel solo next time I will refuse. It is good for once in a lifetime experience. It was very boring."
UAE has put restrictions for passenger flights from India since late April in view of the surge in cases of coronavirus.
Air India has refused to comment on the matter. (ANI)