Passengers create stink over pungent Indonesian planeload of durian

While some consider durian the ‘king of fruits,’ detractors consider its odor to be closer to sewage, stale vomit or damp socks. (AFP)
Updated 07 November 2018
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Passengers create stink over pungent Indonesian planeload of durian

  • Durian is highly popular in Southeast Asia but very divisive
  • ‘Durian is not classified as a hazardous material to be transported on a plane’

JAKARTA: A cargo of pungent durian fruit led an Indonesian plane to be delayed for an hour after passengers turned their noses up at the funky freight and refused to fly.
Durian is highly popular in Southeast Asia but very divisive. While some consider it the “king of fruits,” likening its creamy texture and intense aroma to blue cheese, detractors consider its odor to be closer to sewage, stale vomit or damp socks.
Passengers booked on a Sriwijaya Air flight from Bengkulu province in Sumatra to Jakarta on Monday complained to staff after smelling the fruit and refused to get on the plane — repulsed by the pungent payload and concerned about the extra weight on board.
The airline admitted it was carrying more than two tons of the whiffy wares but insisted they posed no danger to the flight, adding the smell would dissipate once the aircraft took off.
“Durian is not classified as a hazardous material to be transported on a plane,” Sriwijaya Air official Abdul Rahim told national television station Kompas TV late Tuesday.
He blamed unusually hot weather for the stench.
“We made the necessary precautions, such as putting in pandan leaves and coffee powder to absorb the durian smell,” Rahim said.
Staff decided to unload the fruit after passengers who had boarded the flight decided to get off the plane, which took off an hour later and landed safely in Jakarta.
Bengkulu airport staff said they would review procedures regarding transport of durian to avoid passenger discomfort in the future.


Bollywood stars Padukone, Singh wed in Italy

Updated 15 November 2018
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Bollywood stars Padukone, Singh wed in Italy

  • The celebrity couple got married in a private ceremony at Lake Como on Wednesday
  • The pair have yet to comment or release pictures from the event which was closed to the media

MUMBAI: Bollywood superstars Deepika Padukone and Ranveer Singh have tied the knot in Italy, Indian media reported Thursday.
The celebrity couple got married in a private ceremony at Lake Como on Wednesday, according to the Press Trust of India news agency.
The pair have yet to comment or release pictures from the event which was closed to the media.
Padukone is arguably Indian cinema’s biggest female star currently, and she has also broken into Hollywood, starring in “xXx: Return of Xander Cage” opposite Vin Diesel.
Padukone, 32, and Singh 33, announced in a joint statement last month that their wedding would take place on November 14 and 15.
The couple reportedly started dating in 2013 but have kept details of their relationship largely out of the public eye.
Hindi film director Karan Johar, a friend of the couple, tweeted his congratulations.
“Such a stunning gorgeous and beautiful couple!!!! Nazar utar lo! (Keep the evil eye away) !! Badhai ho (Congratulations) !!! Love you both!!! Here’s to a lifetime of love and joy!” he wrote on Wednesday.
The newlyweds have shared the silver screen together, including a controversial Bollywood epic earlier this year that sparked violent protests in northern India.
Padukone played a legendary Hindu queen and Singh a medieval Muslim ruler in the flick, which angered hard-liners, some of whom burned down film sets and made threats toward the two stars.
Indian superstar Priyanka Chopra and American singer Nick Jonas are due to get married in India early next month.