This was one of the worst flying experiences in my flying life. This made me ashamed to call myself an "Indian" because of this policy of Air India. They seem to take advantage of everyone, including the poor. There are agents checking your boarding passes on the gate. They have a weighing machine. They check the handbags about the weight and size, which is fair, and happens most airlines check the size . . However, in this case, if they find that your bag is overweight, the demand you to pay $18/ KG extra (Rs 1300/ kg and you don't have any option but to pay). I requested to talk to the girl from AI at the gate, and she said this is "too heavy and the overhead bin might fall" I tried talking to sense with her, that I had just gotten off Jet Airways, and they didn't ask me to check-in as there is a laptop and a carry on bag allowed. She said we don't have that policy (which is not true). I asked this girl at the gate I didn't have any checked in luggage, so I asked my bag to be gate checked, they said "that is why we are asking you for this money". I asked for the manager, and this gentlemen, who appeared was nice but there are the answers that I got . Further questions I asked:. 1) Could I go out and check it in? Answer: No. 2) Could I not board the flight and get a refund? Answer: We will have to offload you and there is no refund . 3) Could you gate-check it? Especially because I don't have any checked in luggage and consider it my checked in luggage? "Dubai airport charges us for this" and, I paraphrase, this is there charges not ours. Notice the check in staff at the counter didn't ask me to check-in my carryon bag and now I am at the gate 10 min before departure time The worse part of this all is that I watched others who are not well off being forced to pay. You had to go to the ATM, (a travelex ATM) which happens to be close by to take cash out. I had to pay international cash exchange charges, a very high exchange rate (because that is the only ATM accessible). People who seem genuinely strapped for cash, people who had Duty free items in a bag (chocolates), where asked to pay for the items they had just bought. People's who's ATM card didn't work (my card didn't work the first time as well). People who were pleading with them to let there 1 KG over-limit to board the flights with the loved ones. Also, they ONLY take CASH! This seemed like an extortion! I understand that AI needs to make money, but the image of this policy, if true, is really bad. Not just for the AI but for the entire nation. Most people don't realize what the / kg rules are. Either you check it at the counter and give an option for people to re-pack, offload etc or allow them to gate check.