Why did Mamata's plane make emergency landing? Uproar in Parliament

IndiGo said that emergency landing took place due to a “misinterpretation”.
Why did Mamata's plane make emergency landing? Uproar in Parliament
Why did Mamata's plane make emergency landing? Uproar in Parliament
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Parliament witnessed uproars on Thursday, after Trinamool Congress MPs alleged that the emergency landing of a plane carrying West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee  was a “conspiracy”, and her life was "put to danger".

The allegations were made after an IndiGo flight on which the TMC chief was flying made an emergency landing on Wednesday evening at the Kolkata Airport. 

Union Minister of Civil Aviation Jayant Sinha said that the flight was not in danger at any point and said that the DGCA is probing the “fuel shortage” issue.

"The said aircraft hovered for 13 minutes. As per the regulations, an aircraft must have sufficient fuel for hovering for 30-40 minutes after reaching its destination, or to reach the nearest diversionary airport," Sinha said.

The Minister assured the upper house that a probe will be conducted and its report tabled.

Reacting to this, TMC Rajya Sabha MP Derek O’Brien asked why there were emergency measures taken if “nothing went wrong”.

Leaders of other opposition parties including BSP chief Mayawati, JDU’s Sharad Yadav and Left MP TK Rangarajan called for a probe.

When Deputy Chairman P.J. Kurien asked the TMC member to not level any allegations, Leader of Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad intervened to say that O'Brien was not making any allegations.

"He is not making any allegations. If this can happen to one Chief Minister, it can happen to others," Azad said. 

TMC MP Mukul Roy, who was with her on the flight, alleged on Thursday morning that the flight was “short on fuel” as it circled for 30 minutes before landing at the Kolkata airport at 8.45 pm on Wednesday evening.

"On landing, the sight of airport ambulances and fire engines was worrying. While I was told that this was because the aircraft was low on fuel, the Air Traffic Control (ATC) is denying that the pilot had informed them about being low on fuel. That's why as chairman on parliamentary standing committee on tourism and aviation I will ask the civil aviation minister and chairman of airport authority to carry out a probe," he told reporters.

PTI quoted airport officials as saying, "The flight took off from Patna at 7.35pm, an hour behind schedule, and landed here at shortly before 9pm, after hovering over 30 minutes in the sky due to technical reasons." 

Officials added that such an incident was nothing new in any airport.

Following the uproar in Parliament, Indigo in a statement, said that the flight was never short on fuel and the emergency was declared due to a “misinterpretation”.

"The pilot operating 6E-342 had advised the ATC that he has 8 mins of extra holding fuel over Kolkata (Destination) before commencing diversion to the planned alternate," Indigo’s statement read. 

"This is to inform that IndiGo flight 6E 342 from Patna and Kolkata made a normal landing at the Kolkata airport on Wednesday, November 30," it added.

(With IANS inputs)

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