New Delhi: A senior Air India pilot has now been reinstated after being suspended in May last year over sexual harassment allegations by a woman colleague.

A “major penalty” was imposed on Captain Sachin Gupta by the airlines’ internal committee earlier. However, the captain has now appealed against the punishment.

“The Internal Complaints Committee of Air India conducted an inquiry and found Captain Sachin Gupta guilty of misconduct,” PS Negi, Air India’s Regional Director told news agency PTI.

“In keeping with service regulations, Captain Sachin Gupta has now appealed to the Chairman and Managing Director against the punishment awarded. The said appeal on merit will be examined and considered by the competent appellate authority in due course of time,” he added.

Another senior Air India official told the news agency that Sachin Gupta has been “reinstated as instructor”.

The woman who accused the captain of sexual harassment said that he had asked her if she would go out for dinner with him. Notably, she had been training under Sachin Gupta in Hyderabad.

“We went to a restaurant at around 8 pm and this is where my ordeal started…. He started with telling me how depressed and unhappy he was in his married life,” the woman said in her complaint.

“He also asked me how I coped with my husband living away and if I didn’t need to have sex every day. He asked me if I masturbated. At one point I told him I did not want to talk about all this and called a cab,” she added.

“I was left shocked at this behaviour and felt extremely uncomfortable, scared and humiliated,” she said.

The woman said she felt “morally obliged” to report this matter to the airline so that such behaviour is not repeated with anyone else in the future.

(With PTI inputs)