A flight from Kiev to Israel was delayed for more than an hour on Thursday night after an ultra-Orthodox Jewish man insisted the overhead television screens were retracted or turned off.
In keeping with traditional religious teachings and practices, the passenger argued that he did not want his children to watch any TV or films during the flight with budget Israeli airline UP.
Despite his verbal protest, flight attendants were unable to adhere to the man’s request and they issued eye masks instead.
Israeli sports reporter Amit Horsky was on board the flight when the incident took place.
He candidly captured the incident on his phone, which meant a delay for around 200 passengers.
Footage shows the father disputing his case with a flight attendant.
He refused to sit down and according to Horsky every attempt by the crew and passengers to convince the man to take his seat just seemed to make matters worse.
In a caption accompanying video footage posted to Facebook, he wrote: ‘The plane, which was already on the runway, returned to the gate.
‘The door was opened and an El Al (the parent company of UP airline) security guard boarded the plane. After much pleading the “righteous man” agreed to sit down.’
To date, Horsky’s video has been watched more than 38,000 times.
While many viewers have slammed the man for delaying other passenger journeys some have defended his actions.
One commenter wrote: ‘Can we bring a positive perception?
‘I’m raising a scenario that could be very logical. The ultra-Orthodox wanted to keep his children’s eyes protected from any indecent content.’
Horsky told the Times of Israel that there were dozens of other ultra-Orthodox passengers on the flight who ‘yelled at the man, explaining to him that he was profaning God’s name through his actions’.
He added that an argument ensued ‘which at times got very loud’.
In an official response to the incident, Up airline’s parent company El Al said that the passenger allowed the flight to depart after his was given eye masks for his family.
A spokesperson told the Times of Israel: ‘Prior to the departure of the UP flight LY2654, from Kiev [Boryspil International Airport], the passenger refused to obey the safety instructions and refused to be seated or put on his seat belt.
‘After a conversation with the plane’s crew and after it was made clear to him that [the plane] could not take off if he refused to listen to instructions, the passenger sat in his seat and the flight departed.’