Smoke detected on AI aircraft with 130 on board

Kolkata : Over 130 persons onboard an Imphal-bound Air India aircraft had a narrow escape today after the pilot detected smoke in one of the engines just when the plane was entering the runway.

The incident took place at 12:15 PM when the aircraft, operating Air India flight AI 713, after the push back was about to enter the runway when the smoke was detected in one of the engines of the plane, forcing the pilot to abort the journey.

The Airbus A319 with 125 passengers has been towed away to the secondary runway, where it is being inspected by Air India engineers, a source said.

An Air India spokesperson in New Delhi said all passengers were safe, adding the aircraft has been declared airworthy by its engineers and the flight is expected to take off for its destination soon.

An alert fire department personnel soon contained the situation, the source said.