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AIE dismisses airhostess facing gold smuggling charge

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AIE dismisses airhostess facing gold smuggling charge
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Kochi: Air India Express (AIE) airhostess Hiromasa V Sebastian, arrested along with her accomplice on the charge of smuggling six kg of gold from Dubai, has been dismissed from the airline, company sources said Wednesday.

They said AIE has terminated the services of Sebastian, who had joined the airline on Nov 15, 2011, invoking a clause in her job contract that there would be immediate dismissal in case of detention or arrest by police or customs or for indulging in any criminal activities.

Kozhikode-based Sebastian and her friend were arrested on November 8 at the Karipur International Airport by Directorate of Revenue Intelligence officials after they were found in alleged possession of the gold, kept concealed, on arrival from Dubai by an AIE flight.

The sources said this was the first instance in AIE's history that an air hostess' services had been terminated for smuggling activities.

The air hostess was on standby duty to fly on IX343 on Nov 8 on the Kozhikode-Kuwait route on the day of the incident, AIE sources here told PTI adding DRI had given details about her arrest and the reason for detention.

As per the airlines rules, travelling to a foreign country without permission while 'on duty' was a 'serious misconduct', the sources said.

AIE has exercised that contract clause and the termination letter was emailed by the Chief of Personnel AIE, Mumbai, and also posted to the airhostess' residential address, the sources said.

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