The Sikh, Shan Anand, his friend Faimul Alam, a Bangladeshi Muslim who was identified only by his initials WH, and an Arab Muslim MK, all young US citizens, were ordered off the flight from Toronto to New York last month, allegedly based upon their perceived race, colour and ethnicity. Several minutes after the men boarded a white woman flight attendant asked WH to get off the plane
When they asked the flight crew why they were being removed the attendant told them to exit peacefully and demanded they return to the gate. WH said they were frightened and after the plane took off an airline agent told them they could not stay on the plane was because the crew, specifically the Captain felt uncomfortable with them on board and refused to fly unless they were removed from the flight, that eventually took off, leaving the men behind.
The men are now seeking $9 million in compensation from the airline, in a lawsuit filed in a Brooklyn federal court. They are seeking damages, saying the airline engaged in discrimination based on their perceived race, colour, ethnicity, and national origins.