Panic triggered on Indian plane after receiving ‘bomb note’

(MENAFN) An unsettling incident unfolded on Tuesday morning as a flight bound from Delhi to the sacred city of Varanasi was evacuated just prior to departure following the discovery of a threatening note in the aircraft's lavatory. The ominous message, hastily scrawled on tissue paper, ominously warned of a "bomb blast @30 minutes," triggering immediate alarm among passengers and crew.

In response to the alarming discovery, the airline swiftly initiated emergency protocols, deploying a response team to conduct a thorough search of the aircraft. Despite the meticulous sweep, no suspicious items were uncovered, providing some relief amidst the tense atmosphere. IndiGo, the carrier operating the flight, assured that all necessary precautions were taken, including relocating the aircraft to a remote bay in accordance with security guidelines.

The evacuation process, though undoubtedly unsettling for passengers, was executed smoothly, with all 176 individuals safely disembarking through emergency exits. IndiGo promptly arranged for an alternative flight to accommodate the affected travelers, ensuring minimal disruption to their travel plans.

This incident comes against the backdrop of heightened security concerns in Varanasi, a city steeped in religious significance and currently a focal point of election campaigning. As the constituency of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Varanasi is witnessing intense political activity ahead of polling scheduled for June 1 in the final phase of India's parliamentary elections. The presence of prominent opposition figures, including Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav, further underscores the charged atmosphere prevailing in the city.

Notably, this is not the first instance of a threatening note causing alarm aboard an Indian flight. Just weeks ago, a similar incident occurred on an Air India flight from New Delhi to Vadodara, Gujarat, where a note inscribed with the word "bomb" was discovered in the lavatory. However, investigations later revealed the note to be a hoax, underscoring the challenges faced by authorities in distinguishing between genuine threats and false alarms.

Against the backdrop of these incidents, security remains a paramount concern, particularly in light of recent bomb threats targeting schools, hospitals, and public institutions across the country. While such threats are often dismissed as hoaxes, the need for vigilance and robust security measures is underscored, with authorities urging the public to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity promptly.



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