In the latest in a series of incidents involving him, Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra on Thursday survived another air scare while his helicopter was about to land at Bhayander near Mumbai. The pilot, on noticing that there was a cable wire in the vicinity of the school ground where the helicopter carrying Fadnavis was to land, took it up again, police said.
Union Minister Nitin Gadkari was also in the helicopter, police said, adding nobody was hurt in the incident. Last month, a helicopter ferrying Fadnavis to Aurangabad was forced to land soon after taking off from Nashik apparently due to overloading.
The private chopper had taken off again successfully for its scheduled journey after offloading one of the passengers and some luggage. As the helicopter was unable to get the required altitude to fly, some luggage was also off-loaded, an official had said.
On July 7, before take-off in a helicopter from Alibaug near Mumbai, Fadnavis narrowly missed being struck by the chopper’s tail rotor when the pilot inexplicably started the engines before the chief minister had boarded.
Security guards accompanying Fadnavis had then pushed him out of harm’s way. On May 25, the rotor of a helicopter carrying Fadnavis tangled with power lines and it crash-landed during take-off from Nilanga in Latur district.
On May 10, a helicopter assigned to ferry Fadnavis to Nagpur crashed before reaching the pick-up location in Gadchiroli. Maharashtra Government spokesperson Brijesh Singh said no helicopter mishap involving the Chief Minister took place today.
“The video (of the incident) clearly shows that the helicopter did not abort landing and went up again,” he told reporters here.
Fadnavis said he has “stopped reacting to gossips”, while his office also said no such incident took place.