KUNMING - Would you mind being bundled into an aircraft's overhead luggage locker and made to lie there, even though you know it is just a "fun" gesture by your male colleagues to mark your initiation into their airline?
That is precisely the prank targeted at the newly recruited female flight attendants of south-west China's Kunming Airlines by its male cabin crew.
But it was not until Sunday that the practice, which has been carried out for some five years, became widely known following a report by the online publication Civil Aviation Tabloid.
The tabloid criticised the practice, which had never been sanctioned by Kunming Airlines, calling it pointless and dangerous.
The air stewardesses were subject to the "locker cramming" by their male colleagues when they had clocked 30 to 50 hours of flight with the airline, said the publication.
Although some would put up resistance, they would be marked as "uncooperative" and even suffer alienation at work, it pointed out.
Many stewardesses were helpless when their turn came, and there was a case in which one stewardess nearly fell off the locker as she was feeling unwell, the tabloid added.
"An airline overhead luggage locker is not low, and the sudden lifting of a delicate, work-exhausted woman into it by a few burly men could cause injuries," said the Civil Aviation Tabloid.
"Also, the women are touched on various parts of their bodies."
Responding to the report, Kunming Airlines, which is based in Kunming, capital of Yunnan province, said yesterday that it would put a stop to the practice.
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