Mumbai/New Delhi, Oct 4:
A suspected explosive device onboard a stand-by Air India VVIP aircraft has turned out to be a plastic wrapper, an airline official said in New Delhi Saturday.
The Jeddah Airport security cleared the Boeing B-747 aircraft – AI 965 – for further operations later Saturday morning.
The Indian security apparatus went into a tizzy early Saturday after the suspicious object, initially presumed to be an explosive, was found by the cabin crew on the Mumbai-Hyderabad-Jeddah flight at its termination point.
“We have already formed a committee to look into the matter of how such an object, though harmless in nature, come on board. The aircraft was secured and cleared by the airport authorities in Jeddah,” a senior Air India official told IANS in New Delhi.
The committee includes the AI Joint Managing Director and the Commissioner of Civil Aviation Security.
“At no point of time was the safety of the passengers on the aircraft compromised,” AI said in a statement.
The aircraft was on stand-by for use by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in case his regular aircraft developed any last minute snags during his US visit.
It was kept in complete readiness at Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi, and released Friday for commercial operations after Modi’s return to India.