The plane was kept in an isolated area at Stansted Airport under heavy security.
New Delhi: Britain had to scramble its fighter jets Typhoon to escort Mumbai-Newark Air India flight following a bomb threat on Thursday morning. The plane made an emergency landing at London’s Stansted Airport under heavy security and was searched thoroughly even as the threat turned out to be a hoax. The plane had 327 on board. All passengers were deplaned at London.
“AI 191 Mumbai-Newark of June 27 has made a precautionary landing at London’s Stansted airport due to a bomb threat,” the national carrier said in a tweet which it later deleted.
The airline later in a revised statement said: “The flight was diverted at around 9.50 am (Britain local time) following reports of a security alert. The plane is currently at the airport. All 327 passengers have been deplaned and served snacks and other beverages. All passengers are in airport premises.”
Air India had rushed its airport manager and a team to London following the incident.
The plane was kept in an isolated area at Stansted Airport under heavy security. “An Air India Boeing 777 diverted into London Stansted Airport at approximately 10-15 hours and landed safely with Essex police in attendance. It is parked on an isolated stand away from the normal airport operations. Our runway has now re-opened and is fully operational. We are very sorry for any delays and disruption caused by the incident, but our first priority is always the safety of passengers and staff,” the London Stansted Airport authorities said in a statement.
Britain’s Royal Air Force, too, tweeted: “Quick Reaction Alert Typhoons were scrambled earlier from @RAFConingsby to intercept a civilian aircraft; this was safely escorted to Stansted. The Typhoons were authorised to travel at supersonic speed and any inconvenience caused is regretted.”