During a discussion today on the Anti Hijacking Bill 2016 at the Parliament, Neerja Bhanot, the Pan Am Air Hostess who died saving passengers of a hijacked flight in the year 1986. Participating in the debate, Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said that she was not only as courageous as a soldier but also gave up her life to save the people of not only India but also Pakistan and USA.
Sougata Roy, who represents TMC said that she was a courageous lady and a film was also made on her recently. He added that those who do not know about it should watch the film and get some knowledge about what happened. Supporting the bill B N Goud (TRS) said that the bill should contain proper elements so as to compensate for the victims.
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The Anti Hijacking Bill was passed at the Rajya Sabha. This bill will deal with offences related to hijacking. The bill says that if any ground official or any crew member is killed during the hijacking, then death penalty will be given. The bill states that “hijacking is seizing the control on an airline service unlawfully and intentionally, by technological means or by exercising force, coercion or any other form of intimidation”.
Remembering Neerja, he said that Pan Am was an American airline company and that they had not provided any compensation to the Indian crew members. Bhanot was killed by terrorists who hijacked the flight in Karachi. She was the senior most flight attendant of the Mumbai-US Pan Am flight on 5th September 1986.
Being as courageous as a soldier, Neerja Bhanot became the youngest receiver of the highest bravery award of India, which is the Ashoka Chakra.