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SpiceJet flies Boeing 737 Max 8, despite ban

A Jet Airways Boeing 737 on the tarmac at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad. File photo

A Jet Airways Boeing 737 on the tarmac at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad. File photo   | Photo Credit: Getty Images

The ban was prompted by worldwide action on the planes following the crash of an Ethiopian Airlines flight killing all 157 on board.

Despite the Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) ordering an “immediate” grounding of all Boeing 737 MAX 8 planes late on Tuesday night, private carrier SpiceJet, the only airline currently operating the plane, continued to fly the plane through most of Wednesday.

Ministry clarifies on ban

Despite announcing an ‘immediate’ ban on operations of the Boeing 737 Max 8 aircraft late on Tuesday night, the Ministry of Civil Aviation clarified almost 10 hours later that the directive would come into force only from 4 p.m. on Wednesday.

Private carrier SpiceJet, the only Indian carrier with Boeing 737s on its fleet, continued to operate the planes through Wednesday.

The ban was prompted by worldwide action on the planes following last Sunday’s crash of an Ethiopian Airlines flight killing all 157 on board.

“B737 MAX operations will stop from/to all Indian airports. Additionally, no B737 MAX aircraft will be allowed to enter or transit Indian airspace effective 1600 hrs IST or 1030 UTC. The time line is to cater to situations where aircraft can be positioned at maintenance facilities & international flights can reach their destinations,” a tweet from the Ministry said. SpiceJet, too, issued an explanation on Twitter, saying, “SpiceJet has already initiated grounding of its MAX fleet. In order to cause least inconvenience to its passengers we expect to complete this exercise on or before 4 p.m. today.”

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Printable version | Feb 22, 2020 7:37:26 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/all-boeing-737-max-8-aircraft-to-be-grounded-by-4-pm-dgca/article26518572.ece

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