Once everyone was out of the Air India plane, the Boeing B777-300ER was fumigated and the bat died. (Reuters file photo)

An Air India flight to Newark in the US had to return to Delhi Airport on the morning of May 27 when cabin crew saw a bat in the plane’s business class area just half an hour after takeoff, sources said on Friday. The plane had taken off from Delhi Airport at 2:20 a.m. on Thursday and no one noticed the bat before take-off, they said. The cabin crew saw the bat in the business class area of ​​the aircraft and informed the pilots, the sources said.

The bat flew from one area to another area inside the aircraft after being watched by the cabin crew. The pilot then informed the air traffic controller (ATC) and the aircraft was turned back, it said. The plane with crew and passengers dropped its fuel and landed at Delhi airport around 4:20 a.m. on Thursday, the sources said.

As soon as everyone got off the plane, the Boeing B777-300ER aircraft was fumigated and the bat died, whereupon its carcass was recovered from the eighth row of business class. The Civil Aviation Authority’s Directorate-General for Civil Aviation (DGCA) has also received a preliminary report from the airline on the incident.

Air India did not respond to PTI’s request for comment on the matter. However, according to the sources, the airline’s management has asked the engineering team for a detailed report on the incident.

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