(ANI )
(ANI )

IAF fighter jets intercepts Georgian aircraft coming from Pakistan

  • The cargo flight from Georgia was on its way to New Delhi from Karachi but was intercepted by Indian Air Force Sukhoi jets
  • According to Indian officials, the Indian Air Force continues to be in a state of high alert

NEW DELHI : Indian Air Force fighter jets on Friday forced an Antonov An-12 heavy cargo plane coming from Pakistan to land at Jaipur after the aircraft deviated from its original flight path and entered Indian air space from an undesignated point, a person familiar with the developments said.

The cargo flight from Georgia was on its way to New Delhi from Karachi but was intercepted by Indian Air Force Sukhoi jets, the person cited above said.

The Georgian aircraft “entered Indian air space from an unscheduled point in North Gujarat. The aircraft was successfully intercepted by highly alert IAF Air Defence aircraft and was forced to land at Jaipur airfield," the person cited above said.

A statement from the Indian defence ministry said the Antonov aircraft “did not follow the authorized Air Traffic Services (ATS) route and was not responding to radio calls from Indian controlling agencies."

Indian Air Force fighter jets on Friday forced an Antonov An-12 heavy cargo plane coming from Pakistan to land at Jaipur after the aircraft deviated from its original flight path and entered Indian air space from an undesignated point, a person familiar with the developments said.

The cargo flight from Georgia was on its way to New Delhi from Karachi but was intercepted by Indian Air Force Sukhoi jets, the person cited above said.

The Georgian aircraft “entered Indian air space from an unscheduled point in North Gujarat. The aircraft was successfully intercepted by highly alert IAF Air Defence aircraft and was forced to land at Jaipur airfield," the person cited above said.

A statement from the Indian defence ministry said the Antonov aircraft “did not follow the authorized Air Traffic Services (ATS) route and was not responding to radio calls from Indian controlling agencies."

“Since ATS routes in the area were closed due to the current geopolitical situation, and the aircraft entered Indian Air Space from an unscheduled point, the Air Defence interceptor on operational readiness was scrambled," the statement said. The reference to “geopolitical situation" was to the tensions between India and Pakistan following the 14 February Pulwama attack.

India bombed a terrorist training camp in Pakistan’s Balakot area on 26 February and in retaliation Pakistan launched an aerial raid on India on 27 February, targeting Indian military installations in Kashmir. India which had placed its air force on high alert since 26 February, intercepted the Pakistani Air Force jets and prevented any damage to the military installations in Kashmir.

According to Indian officials, the Indian Air Force continues to be in a state of high alert since then. According to news reports Pakistan has not fully re-opened its air space after the Indian raid on Balakot.

On Friday, when the Georgian air craft came within visual contact, “the aircraft was identified as Georgian An-12 flying at 27,000 feet."

It “neither responded on international distress frequency nor to visual signals during interception. However, when challenged, the aircraft responded and informed that it was a non scheduled An-12 aircraft that had got airborne from Tbilisi (Georgia) for Delhi via Karachi. The aircraft was shadowed and forced to land at Jaipur for necessary investigation," the Indian statement said.

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