Loader vehicle hits PM's plane

Loader vehicle hits PM's plane

The special aircraft, Air India 1, was damaged when a loader vehicle hit the cargo door of the plane just hours before take-off. As a result, a standby plane (normally kept ready) had to be summoned.

The PM’s entourage finally left New Delhi after a delay of three hours. One person has been suspended.

The PM’s plane “Agra”, was to leave the IGI airport technical area (New Delhi air force station) at 2.30 pm. Around 1 pm, the loader trolley carrying food items brushed against AI 1 causing a dent. The aircraft was empty at that time.

The Special Protection Group, which provides security to the Prime Minister, detected the dent and pressed the alarm button. Soon, top officials B K Dey, secretary (security), SPG director B V Wanchoo, Cabinet secretary K M Chandrasekhar and principal secretary to the PM, T K A Nair held a discussion and took the decision to summon the standby aircraft. The PM and his team finally left by ‘Khajuraho’ at 5.30 pm.

Speaking to reporters after seeing off the PM, civil aviation minister Praful Patel said: “The aircraft was slightly damaged by a loader vehicle... We have suspended the loader.”
“He is not new to the job, so we are trying to find out whether any mala fide intent was involved,” the minister added.