Pakistan ATC even helped the Indian flight by conveying the Indian jet's position to the Tehran airspace. (Photo Credit: PTI File)
In what can be termed rarest of the rare, the Air India got an unexpected applaud from an Air Traffic Controller (ATC) of Pakistan. In the wake of coronavirus outbreak, the Air India had been operating special flights with relief materials and European nationals, stranded in the country, from India to Frankfurt. In the process, the planes needed to criss-cross the world, including Pakistan.
"As we entered in the Pakistan's Flight Information Region (FIR) and the Pakistan Air Traffic Controller (ATC) greeted us 'Assalaam Alaikum!' This is Karachi's control welcoming Air India for relief flights to Frankfurt," a senior captain quotes Pakistan ATC as saying, ANI reports.
The senior captain added, “It was a very proud moment for me as well as the entire Air India crew when we heard from Pakistan ATC praising our special flight operations to Europe."
After the Pakistan Air Traffic asked the Indian crew to confirm whether it was ‘Air India for relief flights to Frankfurt’, the Air India captain in Pakistan’s airspace responded with, ‘AFFIRM’.
"You are cleared direct to exit point Kebud request estimate crossing Kebud (Exit)," the ATC responded thereafter. The Air India captain then replied, “Cleared direct Kebud, Thank you.”
At this, the Pak ATC said, “We are proud of you that in a pandemic situation you are operating flights, Good Luck.”
After this, the Pakistan ATC even helped the Indian flight by conveying the Indian jet's position to the Tehran airspace and by giving them the details of the two Air India special flights. This was done after an Air India captain, commanding those flights, asked the Pak ATC that he was not getting the next radar for the Iran airspace.
(With inputs from ANI)