Central security agencies have asked the state police to conduct fresh investigations into a case where a Juhu-bound private helicopter made an unscheduled landing at Dapoli off the Ratnagiri coast on October 21 last year without informing the air traffic control (ATC) tower in Mumbai.
Sources in the Bureau of Civil Aviation Security (BCAS) said that at a recent meeting the police was asked to probe the case as there were several unanswered questions. There were five people on board the helicopter including a US citizen. The helicopter had a camera mounted on it. “The chairman of the security panel emphasised the requirement to grill the helicopter,” said a senior security official requesting anonymity.
The panel noted that Global Vectra Helicopters Limited, a Juhu-based company operating the chopper, had taken permission to mount a camera for a film shoot in Mangalore, but did not remove it before leaving.
There was an Air Force security officer on board during the shoot, but he got off at Belgaum.
The crew had said bad weather led to the landing at Ratnagiri. Panel members questioned it because Ratnagiri does not feature on the path between Mangalore and Juhu. The panel also questioned the pilot’s failure to report the landing to the ATC.
Parambir Singh, IG, Konkan division, said, “There is no development in the probe.”