A Canadian pilot of a private air charter company, who was to fly Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) chief Nitin Gadkari to Nagpur, was arrested for carrying a live cartridge in his hand baggage on Tuesday morning.
A CISF detected the cartridge during screening of the pilot's hand baggage at Indira Gandhi International Airport.
Identified as Rafael Jose Hubbard, the pilot couldn't give satisfactory answers when asked why was he carrying the cartridge and was handed over to Delhi Police.
"The 7.62 mm cartridge was recovered from his hand baggage and he was handed over to the police after necessary paperwork," CISF spokesperson Rohit Katiyar said.
Hubbard was scheduled to fly a 9-seater chartered plane in which Gadkari, along with few other politicians, was suppose to fly to Nagpur and then to Gorakhpur.
Police have also contacted the Canadian High Commission to check his antecedents. Sources said Hubbard was staying in Gurgaon for the past one-and-half years and was employed with Euro Charter Company.
"He was apprehended at the general aviation lounge of Terminal 1D at 9am. The plane was scheduled to depart at 9:35am. He was arrested and later produced before a local court," RA Sanjeev, DCP (airport), said.
During his questioning, the pilot claimed he had purchased the bag from Sarojini Nagar market and didn’t know about the cartridge. He later sought bail on personal surety of Rs 25,000.