New Delhi: This story will probably remind you of 2004-film ‘The Terminal’, in which Tom Hanks’ character Viktor Navorski, was forced to live at an airport for a year after his passport became invalid. Though that was imaginary, the real version of it played out here in Delhi! Also Read - UV Tunnels, Self Check-in Machines: Delhi Airport's Strategy to Resume Flights Post Lockdown
Turns out just like Hanks, a German man had been stuck at New Delhi’s Indira Gandhi International Airport for the past 55 days. He had been living in the transit area of the Delhi airport since March 18 as India started imposing international travel restrictions.
As per reports, 40-year-old Edgard Ziebat got stranded at the transit while on his way from Hanoi to Istanbul on March 18 when India decided to stop all in and outbound flights to Turkey in view of the coronavirus pandemic.
More so, he had a criminal record in his home country and the Indian government refused to take custody of him and denied him a visa.
Ziebart was left stranded and could not exit the airport as he did not have an Indian visa. With nowhere left to go, he made the airport his home.
“He has spending day, eating at some of the fast-food outlets still in operation within the terminal, interacting with housekeeping and security staff, taking walks within the transit area, and using the airport’s washrooms and toilets,” said an official to HT.
Airport authorities also helped him by providing him with a recliner, mosquito net, food, and other basic essential items. Some officers visit the man regularly to interact with him to check on his wellbeing, according to officials.
Finally, his ordeal came to an end on May 12, when he left for Amsterdam in a KLM Airlines relief flight, after testing negative for coronavirus.