Written byRamya Patelkhana ·
The Indian Air Force's Sukhoi fighter jets on Friday intercepted an Antonov An-12 heavy cargo plane coming from the Pakistani airspace, trespassing into the Indian territory.
The IAF jets forced the plane to land at the Jaipur air base after intercepting it.
The cargo plane, which was carrying spares, was forced to land in Jaipur at 4:55 pm. "The An-12 entered the Indian air space around 70km north of an important air base in the Rann of Kutch...which is closed for civilian air traffic," reported ANI.
The Press Information Bureau (PIB) also issued a detailed statement on the incident.
Its statement said, "An unknown aircraft entered Indian Air Space in North Gujarat Sector at 1515 hrs with its IFF (Identification, Friend or Foe) 'on'."
It also said that the cargo plane didn't follow "the authorized Air Traffic Services (ATS) route" and was also not responding to Indian agencies' radio calls.
According to reports, the An-12 heavy cargo plane from Georgia, after getting airborne from Pakistan's Karachi for Delhi, had deviated from its scheduled route. The aircraft then ended up entering the Indian air space from an unscheduled location in North Gujarat.
The IAF would be reportedly dispatching a team from the nearby airbases to check the plane's cargo contents.
"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 Defense interceptor on operational readiness was scrambled and vectored towards the unknown aircraft for investigation," PIB's release said.
PIB's statement said the cargo plane, on visual contact, was identified as a Georgian An-12 aircraft flying at 27,000 feet.
"The aircraft neither responded on international distress frequency nor to visual signals during interception," it added.
Later, when challenged, the aircraft informed it was "a non-scheduled An-12" and got airborne from Georgia's Tbilisi for Delhi via Karachi. It was later force landed at Jaipur.
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