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Contact fails with PM's plane, officers suspended

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, July 7: Two officials of the Airports Authority of India (AAI) have been suspended in connection with a communication failure last month between a special jet carrying Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and the air traffic control (ATC) here.

Official sources today confirmed the development but did not name the officials.

There was a sudden communication failure between a special jet of the Indian Air Force (IAF) carrying Mr Singh and the civilian ATC at Palam airport.

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) probed the incident since it was apparently the civilian ground equipment in the shape of VHF communication system which went dead for some minutes.

Alarmed ATC officials re-established the communication link with the IAF VVIP Boeing 737, which was on its way back from Bangalore with the prime minister, by switching to radio telephony, an alternate frequency.

The aircraft of IAF's VIP squadron have a completely separate frequency for communications with the ATC. These planes are equipped with the quadruple redundancy system having four stand-by systems that automatically take over if one fails.


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