The beggar is reportedly an Iranian national and was a paying customer
A bizarre footage has emerged appearing to show a man holding up a commercial flight by persistently begging the passengers for money.
The middle-aged man held out a plastic pouch and pleaded for help on board a Qatar Airways flight from Doha to Shiraz, ignoring repeated requests from the staff to sit down, reports the Daily Mail.
Some passengers even gave the man money as he stood in the aisle of the plane and delayed take-off for more than a minute.
A witness filmed the scene and shared it on social media, where it swiftly viral. It shows the man standing in the aisle, pleading with passengers while holding the pouch.
A female staff member approaches and says: “Sir, please have a seat. I understand you, sir, but we're about to take off.”
He nods in response but continues to beg for alms while standing in the aisle.
He has not been identified but is reported to be an Iranian national.
This Flight QR476 DOH – SYZ of @QatarAirways was bounded to #Iran’s #ShirazInternationalAirport from #Qatar’s #HamadInternationalAirport. Passenger cum #Beggar was reportedly of #Iranian descent. pic.twitter.com/UEOTBdpJOV— Osman Naeem™ (@OsmanTweet) June 19, 2018
Social media speculated as to whether he was a paying customer or had managed to sneak onboard. A one-way flight between Doha and Shiraz, sitting in the most basic seat, costs about £400 with Qatar Airways.
Qatar Airways has since confirmed the man was a paying passenger and had not sneaked onto the aircraft.