A Karnataka bound chartered plane carrying Congress president Rahul Gandhi and four others on Thursday developed “multiple faults" mid-air.
Reacting to the incident, Congress party alleged “intentional tampering" of the aircraft and filed a police complaint, seeking probe into the matter.
“The flight took off at around 9:20 am from Delhi. At around 10:45 am, the aircraft suddenly tilted heavily on the left side and the altitude dipped steeply, combined with violent shuddering of the aircraft body,” according to the complaint filed by Kaushal Vidyarthee, a key member of Rahul Gandhi’s team.
The complaint stated that the weather outside was sunny, normal and not windy and the autopilot of the aircraft was also not functioning.
The pilots could not land the aircraft after it developed “multiple faults”. However, after two failed attempts, the plane landed safely at the Hubli airport.
"Serious questions related to intentional tampering with the aircraft cannot also be brushed aside and are required to be addressed and investigated," Vidyarthee said.
Vidyarthee demanded the “faulty” aircraft to remain grounded till the investigation is completed.
Snag not uncommon: Directorate General of Civil Aviation
Reacting to the "multiple faults" in Rahul Gandhi's plane, Aviation Regulator said that DGCA will examine the incident in detail but asserted that the snag was not uncommon.
"The operator has reported the incident to us. It was snag of autopilot mode and pilot shifted to manual mode and landed safely," said BS Bhullar, the head of Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA).
"Shutting of autopilot incidents are not uncommon. For any VIP flight, DGCA examines it in detail. We shall do here also," Bhullar added.