India flights: Bomb threat that caused emergency landing was 'hoax call', says official

National Security Guard and local police teams completed checking the aircraft on Tuesday morning after the emergency landing on Monday night


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Photo for illustrative purposes only
Photo for illustrative purposes only

Published: Tue 10 Jan 2023, 11:18 AM

An official has said that the alleged bomb threat onboard a Moscow-Goa chartered flight, which caused an emergency landing on Monday, was just a 'hoax call'.

The chartered flight was diverted to Gujarat's Jamnagar after Goa ATC following an alleged bomb threat on Monday.

Jamnagar Collector Saurabh Pardhi said a thorough search was conducted by the National Security Guard (NSG), police and Bomb Disposal Squad (BDS) teams but nothing suspicious was found.

"A thorough search was conducted by the NSG, police and BDS teams. Hand baggage and check-in baggage of passengers were also checked. The flight has been cleared (for takeoff) and after taking care of certain formalities, it will depart for Goa. It was a hoax call," the Jamnagar Collector said.

Jamnagar SP Premsukh Delu said, "Around 9 pm, the district control received a call from ATC after which the district police and a bomb disposal team reached the airport and launched a rescue operation. A total of 236 passengers and eight crew members were on the flight. Once all passengers and crew members were evacuated, the flight was checked thoroughly. The NSG team also reached the spot."

He further said the flight landed around 9.50 pm on Monday and the search operation was carried out till 9 am on Tuesday.

"Passengers, plane and the luggage were thoroughly checked. We found nothing suspicious," he added.

Jamnagar Airport director, too, confirmed that the security agencies found nothing suspicious onboard the Moscow-Goa chartered flight.

The Goa-bound international flight was diverted to Jamnagar, Gujarat on Monday evening after the crew received clearance for an emergency landing at Jamnagar airport in the wake of an alleged bomb threat, informed airport authorities.

Earlier, the security agencies cordoned off the airport for 9 hours. A total of 236 passengers and eight crew members were on the flight.

They said all passengers were safely evacuated and escorted to the lounge inside the terminal building.

The Russian Embassy issued a statement saying they were alerted by the Indian authorities about the alleged bomb scare on the Azur Air flight en route from Moscow to Goa.

"The Embassy was alerted by Indian authorities about an alleged bomb scare on Azur Air flight from Moscow to Goa. The aircraft made an emergency landing at Jamnagar Indian Air Force Base. Everyone on board is safe; authorities conducting an inspection of the aircraft," said the Russian Embassy in a statement.

Jamnagar District Collector Saurabh Parghi told ANI, "An intensive search was carried out by security agencies from 9.50 pm (on Monday) till the morning hours."

He said security agencies were also verifying the passenger details. "Checking is done through routine scanning of passengers. Non-stop work has been on for nine hours. The baggage was checked and details verified," he said.

"We received information about a bomb threat in the Moscow-Goa flight, which was diverted. The flight had 236 passengers and 8 crew members. All passengers were escorted out safely and are in the airport lounge. Bomb detection and disposal work are underway," the Jamnagar district collector had said earlier.


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