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Coupleís tiff takes off, flight gets grounded

Nedumbassery (Kerala), Jan. 9: An international flight taxied back to the parking bay before take-off following a domestic snag ' a squabbling couple on board demanded that they be offloaded immediately.

George Joseph Mulavarickal and his wife Goldy ' both in their early thirties ' were on the Dubai-bound Emirates flight yesterday with their child and the manís parents, the subject of the tiff.

Goldy did not want to take them to the US, where the couple lives, sources said.

As the quarrel gathered steam, the couple told the flight steward that they did not want to fly. The captain was informed and he brought the flight back to the parking bay at Nedumbassery airport.

According to sources, George and Goldy had been quarrelling at the departure lounge as well. However, he managed to pacify his wife and the family boarded the flight.

But Goldy, whose other bone of contention was that they were taking her in-laws home instead of her parents, erupted again as the flight began taxiing for take-off.

The plane left without the Mulavarickals at 12.15 pm, one hour behind schedule.

Emirates authorities detained George and his family in the airport till evening for security reasons. According to aviation rules, if a passenger alights from a flight, he should be detained in the airport till the aircraft reaches its destination.

Emirates officials said the family could fly the same airline later after paying re-booking charges.

The coupleís home, in Pathanamthitta district in central Kerala, tops the number of emigrants in the state, mostly to the US and Europe. Most of them are reluctant to take with them their aged parents who are left to fend for themselves in decrepit houses or old-age homes.

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