Replying to the issue raised in Lok Sabha by the opposition with regard to an IndiGo flight carrying West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee not being allowed to land inspite of running short of fuel, Union Civil Aviation Minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju on Thursday said that the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has ordered inquiry as to how three flights reported that they were low on fuel.
“DGCA has ordered enquiry to check as to how the three flights reported low fuel, and it is wrong to say that the IndiGo flight was made to hover for 30-40 minutes. None of the pilots asked for emergency landing. Indigo should have carried extra fuel,” Raju said.
TMC MP Sudip Bandyopadhyay raised the issue in Lok Sabha and said that the life of Mamata Banerjee and other passengers had been put at huge risk.
In the Rajya Sabha, party MP Derek O’Brien also highlighted the risk factor to the West Bengal Chief Minister.
“When a pilot seeks landing and the plane is short on fuel, why was he denied?,” O’ Brien asked.
Reports said Mamata’s flight from Patna on Wednesday night circled over Kolkata for nearly half an hour and as a result ended up being low on fuel.
On landing at Kolkata airport, the plane was immediately surrounded by fire engines and ambulances.
Flight 6E 342 was scheduled to take off from Patna at 6.35 p.m. but departed at 7.25 p.m. It reached Kolkata around 8.15 p.m., but had to circle till 8.40 p.m. and then was allowed to land.