Man on Delhi-Mumbai flight held for ‘bomb’ threat as woman raises false alarm, let off

The police said Azeem Khan was ‘found to be carrying nothing suspicious’ but has been bound down

June 10, 2023 01:54 am | Updated 01:54 am IST - New Delhi

Delhi Police on Friday said that a man on a Delhi-Mumbai flight was held on the instance of his co-passenger who overheard him saying the word “bomb” during a phone conversation while they were waiting at the IGI Airport.

The police added that he was later released and served with a notice after “nothing suspicious” was found on him.

According to a senior officer, Azeem Khan, 24, has been “bound down”. When a person is ‘bound down’, they are not arrested but prohibited from leaving the country for the purpose of joining the investigation in a case at any stage. If someone refuses, the police may arrest the person at their discretion.

The incident took place on Wednesday just before the Vistara flight UK-941 was set to depart at 4.55 p.m., eventually getting delayed by nearly two hours.

The senior officer said the woman passenger, who has not been named, told a flight crew member that she heard Mr. Khan speaking to someone on the phone about a “bomb”.

“Immediately, ground security and Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) personnel were informed. The flight’s take-off was delayed and an anti-sabotage check was carried out in the terminal area as well as the check-in baggage,” another officer said.

CISF and aviation security personnel escorted both the passengers out of the flight, checked them as well as their cabin baggage, the police said.

By 6.45 p.m., the threat was declared hoax and the flight, carrying 163 passengers, was cleared, they added.

Mr. Khan was let off but he missed the plane which was supposed to connect him to a flight to Dubai where he works as a labourer, the senior officer said.

‘No intention of threat’

“Analysis of his call detail records and technical surveillance revealed that Mr. Khan had no intention of making any kind of threat. He said he was speaking to his mother on the phone and telling her that ‘a CISF man removed a coconut from my bag fearing it could be a bomb,’” he added.

Mr. Khan has returned to his home in Pilibhit, Uttar Pradesh, and has been served a notice under Section 41 of CrPC, the police said.

They added that an FIR has been registered against Mr. Khan for creating public nuisance.

No response was issued by the police when asked whether the woman passenger would face any action for raising the false alarm.

Top News Today

Sign in to unlock member-only benefits!
  • Access 10 free stories every month
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign-up/manage your newsletter subscriptions with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early access to discounts & offers on our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide by our community guidelines for posting your comments.

We have migrated to a new commenting platform. If you are already a registered user of The Hindu and logged in, you may continue to engage with our articles. If you do not have an account please register and login to post comments. Users can access their older comments by logging into their accounts on Vuukle.