Air India and aviation authorities on Saturday termed as false claims of a security scare onboard a recent Delhi-bound Air India flight from London.
Nothing unusual was reported on the flight AI-112, which had departed from London Heathrow Airport on March 17 for Indira Gandhi International airport in New Delhi, officials said, adding, "there is no truth" in the reports which have appeared today about a hijack scare on the plane.
A section of the media has reported that there was an aborted hijack attempt on the national carrier's London-Delhi flight. They said the crew had become suspicious about a passenger, who "feigned" illness, and the other passengers, who claimed to be doctors and offered to help him on the flight, as they were all Pakistani and insisted on meeting the captain.
"There is no truth in it," Civil Aviation Secretary V Somasundaram told PTI in New Delhi when contacted.
The Air India too issued a statement saying all such claims were totally false and there were no Pakistani nationals as mentioned in these reports.
"A section of the press has reported of an incident where a passenger had reported sick on board an international flight and more than one passenger claiming to be doctors, came forward to help in the medical emergency case and wanted to see the pilot.”
"According to the report these doctors and the sick passengers were Pakistani national and were trying to get access to the cockpit. Air India would like to clarify that the above reports are totally false. During last week one of the passenger required medical assistance on aboard a London-Delhi flight and he was assisted by a lady passenger who came forward to help him.”
"The passenger who required medical assistance was a British passport holder and the nurse who assisted him was an Indian origin. There were no Pakistani nationals as mentioned in these reports," it said.
According to officials, who refused to divulge the identity of the passenger who fell sick, the commander was informed of the developments onboard, as per the norms. "The commander after consultation with the crew decided not to call for emergency landing or divert the flight since the patient was responding to treatment," he said.
Terming the reports in a section of media, which suggested a "hijack attempt", as a "pure figment of imagination," the officials said, "Nothing unusual was reported on the flight by the operating staff."