Flight Operations Briefly Halted at Delhi's IGI Airport After Pilot Spots Drone

Delhi's IGI Airport

Airport security sources said the pilot while landing reported about the object.

Flights were temporarily halted on all three runways at India's Delhi airport for about half an hour on Sunday evening after a "drone-like object" was noticed by an Air Asia pilot, The Times of India reported.

"Initially airport official informed the Delhi Police that a drone spotted at the airport premises at around 11 am, however, during the investigation official could not trace the suspected object (Drone)". The statement said that the pilot followed normal procedure, carried out uneventful landing.

Following this, the pilot immediately alerted the Air Traffic Control (ATC). In this regard all 03 runways Operation was closed as precautionary measure.

The airport, which has three runways, is the busiest in the country and handles around 1,200 flight movements everyday.

It was resumed shortly before 8 pm after the Delhi Police gave airport authorities clearance, Delhi airport sources said, adding that several flights that were to land, were diverted from New Delhi during this time-period.

"On Sunday at about 7:09 pm a flight (I5-799) pilot reported that he had seen a drone like object near IGI Airport". Besides the security scare, which is being probed by investigating agencies, flight operations at the airport were suspended for close to an hour both in the morning and evening causing inconvenience to passengers.

While India is yet to release its full rules and regulations for flying unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) or drones, in most countries that have enacted laws, it is illegal to fly within one kilometer of an airport.

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