Saturday, September 09, 2017

DGCA, Air India pass the buck on Hajj flight mess

While the failure of authorities to facilitate landing of flights carrying Hajj pilgrims at the Srinagar airport on Thursday put the state government in an embarrassing situation, the directorate general of civil aviation and Air India are passing buck over the issue. The Air India has blamed the DGCA for denying them the landing permission while the DGCA has in turn blamed the airline for being late.
On Thursday, the Srinagar airport authorities returned an Air India A1-5102 flight carrying Hajj pilgrims to Kashmir from Jeddah while another Hajj flight A1-5104 wasn’t even allowed to take off from New Delhi airport as the DGCA allegedly denied permission to the airline to land its flights after sunset. .
Station manager Air India Srinagar, Muhammad Iqbal told Greater Kashmir that their flight was hovering over Srinagar airport for about 25 minutes “as it was denied permission by the DGCA to land.”
“Despite clearance by the Indian Air Force, the non-issuance of permission by DGCA led to chaos as a result of which we had to divert our flight back to Delhi Airport,” Iqbal said.
“For operation of flights post-dusk, the airlines have to seek permission from DGCA as night operation of flights has not started in Srinagar so far,” he said, adding that the Hajj flight coming from Jeddah was already late due to congestion at the Jeddah airport.
08/09/17 Mukeet Akmali/Greater Kashmir