Mamata flight hovers in sky, party alleges conspiracy

Kolkata: A private airline plane carrying West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee hovered for over half an hour in the city sky before landing at the NSCBI Airport here tonight, prompting Trinamool Congress to allege that it was a conspiracy to eliminate the party supremo.

“The flight took off from Patna at 7.35 PM, an hour behind schedule, and landed here at shortly before 9 PM, after hovering over 30 minutes in the sky due to technical reasons,” airport officials said, adding that such incident was nothing new in any airport.

Senior Trinamool Congress leader and state Urban Development Minister Firhad Hakim, who was accompanying Banerjee in the flight, however, took strong exception to “delayed permission from the ATC” for the flight to land and alleged that it was a conspiracy to eliminate the CM.

Hakim claimed that even as the pilot announced 180 km away from Kolkata that the plane would land within five minutes, it ultimately touched down after over half an hour, “seriously inconveniencing the chief minister and other passengers”.

“The pilot sought permission for landing from the ATC as the plane was flying short on fuel but the ATC kept the flight on hold,” he alleged.

“This is nothing but a conspiracy to kill our chief minister as she has raised voice against demonetisation and is touring the country to organise a mass movement against the anti-people decision,” Hakim said.

When contacted, a senior ATC official said he was not aware of such incident.