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Rediff News  All News  » News » DGCA team to begin probe into Kerala 'hijack' drama

DGCA team to begin probe into Kerala 'hijack' drama

October 20, 2012 14:54 IST

A police team has been set up by the Kerala government to ascertain the truth behind the hijack alarm in the Abu Dhabi-Kochi Air India flight on Friday.

A team of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation officials is set to arrive in Thiruvananthapuram to probe the case.

A team of the state police, led by Assistant Commissioner K S Vimal, will also conduct an investigation to probe the pilot's charge -- that she had issued the hijack alert after some passengers entered the cockpit and threatened her.

Meanwhile, airport sources said the team from Chennai, led by its southern regional director, will arrive in Thiruvananthapuram later on Saturday and immediately start proceedings, including taking the statement of pilot Rupali Waghmare of Air Express Flight 4422, which flew here from Abu Dhabi.

Airport authorities have already sent a copy of the Cockpit Voice Recorder to DGCA's office in Mumbai for analysing its contents.

The team would also question airport officials and staff present.

The drama unfolded on Friday after passengers protested the diversion of the Kochi-bound flight to the Kerala capital and delay in arranging onward travel to Kochi.

Based on the woman pilot's complaint, city police had registered a case against six 'identifiable' passengers on board the flight.

In her complaint to the director general of police, the pilot claimed she was threatened, manhandled and restrained from moving out for more than five hours, said the police.

Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, who ordered the police probe, had on Friday described the protest by passengers as a "spontaneous reaction" due to the delay in reaching their destination after being stranded.

Nearly 200 passengers of the Air India Kochi bound flight from Abu Dhabi protested and some of them allegedly tried to enter the cockpit after the Kochi-bound flight was diverted to Thiruvananthapuram due to bad visibility.

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