NEW DELHI: Two flights bound for Nepal and Bhubaneswar were grounded just before taking off after police were alerted of a bomb threat call on both airliners at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in the national capital on Thursday.
The passengers on board the two flights, Royal Nepal Airlines (Delhi-Kathmandu) and Air India (Delhi-Bhubaneswar), were evacuated and taken to the isolation bay where security agencies carried out anti-sabotage checks after a threat call was received by the airport control room at about 10 am.
Deputy Commissioner of Police Dinesh Gupta said, “Today at 10.04 am Delhi International Airport Limited call centre in Gurgaon received a call regarding bombs on the land line that there are bombs in flight No RA 206 Delhi to Kathmandu which was expedited to departure at 10.40 am and AI 075 Delhi to Bhubaneswar which was expedited to departure at 11 am. The number displayed at the call centre named him as Abhishek Singh from CBI office.” The Bomb Threat Assessment Committee (BTAC) declared the threat as specific at 11.05 a.m and CISF activated all standard drills.
While the Kathmandu flight had 155 passengers and nine crew members, the flight bound for Odisha’s capital, Bhubaneswar, had 178 fliers and seven crew members. Passengers of both flights and their baggage were subjected to a second round of checking with the BTAC monitoring the situation.
Security personnel from the CISF and Delhi Police along with bomb disposal squads cordoned off the two planes, the officials said. They added the threat had been triggered after the airport control room received a call from a person identifying himself as Abhishek Singh, a “CBI officer”.