Security alert on US plane bound for India; 12 held
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Security alert on US plane bound for India; 12 held

Dutch fighter planes accompany the Northwest Airlines plane over German airspace and take it to Amsterdam.

india Updated: Aug 24, 2006 09:50 IST

Twelve passengers were arrested from a Mumbai-bound Northwest Airlines flight that returned to Amsterdam's Schiphol airport after the pilot raised an alert over worrying behaviour, the Dutch ANP news agency reported.

The plane was flying with 149 passengers on board when what the pilot called "behaviour of concern" prompted him to return to Amsterdam.

The jet, flying over Germany at the time, was escorted back to Amsterdam by two Dutch F-16s as soon as it entered Dutch air space.

"Northwest is cooperating with the appropriate government officials. Flight 42 is cancelled for today, but will be travelling to Mumbai tomorrow. Passengers are being accommodated at local hotels," the company said.

The flight, NW0042, will now leave Amsterdam at 9 am local time on Thursday, and land in Mumbai at 8.30 pm IST, 22 hours behind schedule, an executive in the US-owned airline's office at Mumbai airport said.

Flight NW0041, scheduled to leave Mumbai for Amsterdam at 12.30 am on Thursday has, as a result, been "delayed" by 46 hours- it will now leave at 10.30 pm on Friday.

Schiphol airport spokesperson Katherine Gerneuoen would not confirm the number of Indian passengers on board, or if any of those being questioned were Indians. Flight NW0042 is widely preferred for being the first among the flights from Europe to reach Mumbai.

First Published: Aug 23, 2006 17:46 IST