Helicopter used by Congress seized for wrong landing

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Bangalore, May 11 (UNI) The Election Commission has seized a helicopter in Chikmagalur hired by the Congress for landing in a field where 40 children were playing.

The copter had been seized and brought to the city. Notices had been issued to pilot and the party, Karnataka Chief Electoral Officer M N Vidyashankar said.

The copter had brought Union Minister Meira Kumar for campaigning in that district.

Speaking to newspersons here, Mr Vidyashankar said, ''This is a very serious incident. The pilot landed the chopper in a wrong place, four km away from the designated place. 40 children were playing on the field and one of the children was saved by proverbial whisker.'' He said a criminal case was filed against the pilot and the case would be heard by a court.

In a similar incident, another chopper, used by the same party, was seized in Gulbarga earlier and the company had to furnish a bond of Rs 13 crore to get it released, he said.

Asked about Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde saying in Bellary that he had not received the EC notice about his statement in the city yesterday, the CEO said his office had received the acknowledgement from the KPCC office when the notice was served.

''We have served the notice yesterday. It is left to them to answer in 48 hours,'' he said.

Mr Shinde was slapped a notice by the EC after he told the media at the KPCC office here that the centre would sanction a mega thermal power project if the party was voted to power in the ongoing assembly election in Karnataka.

He had accused the previous coalition government of not making use of the centre's offer for such project to be set up in Tadadi in Uttara Kannada district, which was stalled due to severe protests from the locals.


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