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Air India Aircraft Nearly Collides With Nepal Airline Plane In Kathmandu; 2 ATCs Suspended

A Nepal Airlines plane was heading towards Kathmandu from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, while an Air India plane was also coming to the Nepal capital from New Delhi. The DGCA has sought details for a probe into the incident.

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An Air India and a Nepal Airlines aircraft averted a major collision when they came too close mid-air but the warning systems alerted the pilots and timely action by them prevented the disaster, the Civil Aviation Authority of Nepal (CAAN) said in Kathmandu on Sunday.

Two employees of the air traffic controller department, who were in charge of the control room at the time of the incident, were suspended for "carelessness", a CAAN spokesperson Jagannath Niroula said.

The incident happened on Friday morning. A Nepal Airlines plane was heading towards Kathmandu from Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia, while an Air India plane was also coming to the Nepal capital from New Delhi.

The Air India aircraft was descending from 19,000 ft while the Nepal Airlines aircraft was flying at an altitude of 15,000 ft at the same location, Niroula said. After it was shown on the radar that the two aircraft were in proximity, the Nepal Airlines aircraft descended to 7,000 ft, the spokesperson said.

Nepal authorities have formed a three-member probe committee to investigate the matter.

Nepal's watchdog has also asked the Indian regulator to take necessary action against the guilty and inform it, according to CAAN spokesperson Jagannath Niroula.

DGCA seeks details for probe

The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has sought details from the Nepal authorities regarding the incident.

A senior DGCA official told PTI that they were obtaining details from Nepal on the airprox incident. The CAAN had written a letter to DGCA to conduct an investigation into the matter after it suspended the ATCs in Kathmandu.

Meanwhile, Air India has already submitted a report to the aviation watchdog. The crew of the Air India flight was being off-rostered while the incident is looked into, the official added.

There was no immediate comment from Air India on the same.

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