Mumbai: Pvt chopper rides banned on visarjan routes

Last Updated: Sun, Sep 11, 2011 20:50 hrs

Following Mumbai police orders, charter companies have been forced to cancel chopper rides on Ganesh visarjan (immersion) routes on Sunday.

The unprecedented move comes in wake of fears that terrorists may take the aerial route to attack devotees who throng the city’s popular Girgaum and Juhu beaches.

The visarjan day coincides with the tenth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks at the World Trade Centre in the US.

Confirming the move, ACP Vishwas Nangre Patil said helicopter companies had been denied permission as a precautionary measure. Four charter companies had planned joyrides to allow citizens to take an aerial darshan of the visarjan and shower petals on idols. A 15-minute ride costs Rs 3,400 a person.

However, all other chopper operations from the Juhu airport remained normal. It is a base for Oil and Natural Gas Corporation’s off shore operations.

“Flying was allowed, except on the visarjan route and beaches,’’ said M Yadagiri, airport director, Juhu.

More from Sify: