Drone-like object spotted in Delhi, flight operations briefly hit
New Delhi: All three runways at the Delhi airport were closed on Sunday evening and flight operations temporarily suspended after a pilot reported that he had spotted a drone in the area, news agency ANI reported.
The "drone-like object" was spotted by an Air Asia pilot about 7:09 pm. The pilot reported about the object while landing, airport sources said.
Many flights were diverted as the operations were suspended for about 40 minutes. The flight operations resumed at 7.55 pm, after clearance from the Delhi Police.
Two Air India flights were diverted to Lucknow and Ahmedabad following the incident. One flight each of GoAir and IndiGo that were diverted to Jaipur returned to Delhi at 8:31 pm.
The incident is likely to lead to delays in departure and arrival of flights.
Sanjay Bhatia, Deputy Commissioner of Police at the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport said that "a drone-like object was reportedly seen flying near the Terminal 3.
"We are verifying it. But the operations at the airport continued as normal and there was no delay in arrival or departure of flights," Bhatia said. According to another police official, the drone-like object was spotted around 7.30 pm. The airport, which has three runways, is the busiest in the country and handles around 1,200 flight movements every day. During peak time, the airport handles up to 70 flights per hour.