An An-12 aircraft of Georgia was intercepted by the Indian Air Force after it entered Indian air space from Pakistan, deviating from its flight path, official sources said. The aircraft was forced to land at Jaipur airfield by air defence aircraft of the IAF, they said. The An-12 aircraft of Georgia, after getting airborne for Delhi from Karachi, deviated from its scheduled flight path and entered Indian air space from an unscheduled point in North Gujarat, the sources said.
The pilots of the plane were being questioned by Indian officials, according to news agency ANI.
Video: ANIMay 10, 2019
"An unknown aircraft entered Indian Air Space in North Gujarat Sector at 1515 hrs with its IFF (Identification, Friend or Foe) ‘on’. The aircraft did not follow the authorized Air Traffic Services (ATS) route and was not responding to Radio calls from Indian controlling agencies. Since ATS routes in the area were closed due to the current geopolitical situation, and the aircraft entered Indian Air Space from an unscheduled point, the Air Defence interceptor on operational readiness was scrambled and vectored towards the unknown aircraft for investigation," the defence wing of the government said in a statement.
"On visual contact, the aircraft was identified as Georgian An-12 flying at twenty seven thousand feet. The aircraft neither responded on international distress frequency nor to visual signals during interception. However, when challenged, the aircraft responded and informed that it was a non scheduled An-12 aircraft that had got airborne from Tbilisi (Georgia) for Delhi via Karachi. The aircraft was shadowed and forced to land at Jaipur for necessary investigation," it said.
The IAF said the aircraft entered Indian air space in North Gujarat with its IFF (Identification, Friend or Foe) signal "on".
"Nothing suspicious was found in the investigation. The plane has been released," Jaipur Additional Police Commissioner Laxman Gaur told PTI.