A US-bound Air India flight made an unscheduled landing in London — escorted by fighter jets of the Royal Air Force — for what the airline initially called a “bomb threat”. Minutes later, the tweet was deleted without any update being offered. It turned out that the matter was a hoax, news agency Reuters reported, quoting an unnamed official of Air India.
The landing at London’s Stansted airport was confirmed almost immediately by the British authorities. The Air India Boeing 777 “diverted into the airport at 10:15 hrs and landed safely with the Essex Police in attendance,” a statement from the airport read.
“Our runway has now re-opened and is fully operational following a precautionary landing of Air India flight. We are sorry for any disruption caused by the incident and would like to thank you for your patience,” the statement added.
Quoting UK’s Ministry of defence, Reuters reported that Typhoon aircraft were deployed at supersonic speed to intercept a civilian plane.
Reuters later tweeted, “Air India official says bomb threat on Mumbai-Newark flight was a hoax, plane back in the air”. The hoax call was received at Mumbai airport, the official said, adding that there is no security threat, Reuters reported.