Mumbai jeweller is first man on no-fly list

Last Updated 20 May 2018, 18:23 IST

Mumbai jeweller Birju Kishore Salla has earned the ignominy of being the first person to enter the national no-fly list after he created a hijack scare onboard a Jet Airways flight in October last year.

The first entry in the list came eight months after the no-fly list was unveiled.

The 37-year-old was arrested following an emergency landing of the Mumbai-Delhi Jet Airways plane at the Ahmedabad airport after the pilot was informed about a note from the washroom of the plane that mentioned that there were hijackers and a bomb in the cargo area.

Salla was also the first to be booked under the stringent Anti-Hijacking Act.

"Salla, the man who had created the hijack scare in a Jet Airways flight last year, is the first person to be put on the no-fly list," a senior DGCA official said.

Salla has been charged with level 3 offence (life-threatening behaviour), which carries a minimum of a two-year ban or more without limit.

It was not immediately known whether Salla has been banned for more than two years.

The DGCA said it is the responsibility of Jet Airways now to inform other airlines about the grounding of this particular passenger under the Civil Aviation Requirement.

The DGCA will continue to maintain a database of such passengers.

Salla is claimed to have confessed to preparing the note, hoping the threat would make Jet Airways close its operation in Delhi and his girlfriend, who works in the airlines Delhi office, would come back to Mumbai.

The police had claimed that the note was a printed in Urdu and English.

According to the threatening note, "Flight No 9W-339 is covered by hijackers and aircraft should not be land (sic) and flown straight to PoK (Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir). Twelve people on board. If you put landing gear you will hear the noise of people dying. Don't take it as a joke. Cargo area contains explosive bomb and will blast if you land in Delhi."

Salla had also played mischief with the airline earlier by carrying a cockroach and then blaming the operator.

(Published 20 May 2018, 11:34 IST)

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