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  India   ‘AI crew mistook gliders for parachutes’

‘AI crew mistook gliders for parachutes’

AGE CORRESPONDENT
Published : Jan 31, 2016, 2:13 am IST
Updated : Jan 31, 2016, 2:13 am IST

Preliminary investigation into the incident on Friday, in which Air India crew had allegedly spotted parachutes while they were mid-flight, has revealed that the flying objects could be paragliders.

Preliminary investigation into the incident on Friday, in which Air India crew had allegedly spotted parachutes while they were mid-flight, has revealed that the flying objects could be paragliders.

According to the sources, the objects were noticed by the crew, near Raigad, when they were 20 minutes away from landing and almost 16,000 feet above the sea level. Police officials believe that the flying objects were possibly para-gliders. Earlier on January 19, an Air India passenger had spotted three gliders during the flight and an inquiry was ordered but the officials came to know that the gliders were spotted at Matheran where paragliding events are usually held. Since the frequency with which flying objects are being spotted from flights has been on the rise, aviation experts are concerned with the security aspect.

 

They fear a repeat of Purulia incident of 1995, where unauthorised arms and ammunition were dropped off a Russian plane at Purulia in West Bengal, apparently to aid a semi-secret cult. Questioning the identity of these flying objects, aviation expert Ujjawl Thengdi said, “Paragliders cannot reach to this height hence officials should try to identify those objects. Also, there should be some coordination between air traffic control departments and paragliding clubs.”