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SABOTAGE?

Thursday, July 12, 2018
By Zuber Ansari

Ghatkopar Air Crash Case

Kalina FSL probing whether the crash was sabotage or planned explosion

After the various allegations made by family members of five people who lost their lives in the 12-seater plane King Air C90 crash in Ghatkopar two weeks ago, the Kalina Science Forensic Laboratory (FSL) has continued its investigation and is probing whether the crash was sabotage or a planned explosion.

During the two-week long investigation into the case, the Kalina FSL is concentrating only on the fuel samples which was found from the spot and trying to find out if the aircraft fuel was adulterated by mixing something in the tank.

According to Kalina FSL sources, after the incident, FSL reached the spot to collect  samples but fire department had used more water to douse the flames in which most of the evidence was washed away. Due to this act, most of the evidence was not found from the spot. The FSL's biology department has finished the probe and now General Analytical and Instrument (GAI) department is conducting the probe; they will find out if anything was mixed in the fuel before the aircraft took off.  

Family members of the deceased were also alleging to authorities and making allegations against them as well, due to which officials said that they have taken the  case on a priority basis and are trying to find out if any explosive material was kept inside the plane to take revenge on someone or some of the passengers or crew. The report of the GAI investigation will be submitted within a week, FSL sources said, adding that the pilot, co-pilot and technicians are well experienced, hence they had to dig deep into the unfortunate issue.

Two days ago family members of co-pilot Marya Zuberi, who was among the dead, has filed a complaint with the Ghatkopar police station against concerned officials alleging they were directly or indirectly responsible for the crash. Zuberi’s family has demanded an independent inquiry into the crash by a third party such as the Central Bureau of Investigation.

But police did not file any FIR in the case till now because they are waiting for Directorate General of Civil Aviation’s (DGCA) report which is likely to be submitted soon. Zuberi's family members questioned that since the aircraft is 22 years old, how did it not meet with an accident earlier. The aircraft was not better than a junk aircraft, which was used by non-paid trainee engineers for training and learning aircraft maintenance.  

On June 28, a 12-seater aircraft crashed into an under construction site in Ghatkopar in which co-pilot Marya Zuberi, Captain Pardeep Singh Rajput, maintenance engineer Surabhi Gupta, technician Manish Pandey died. A carpenter, Govind Dubey, walking near the site was burnt to death as the debris and fuel from the aircraft hit him.

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