A helicopter ferrying Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to Aurangabad on Saturday was forced to land soon after taking off from Nashik apparently due to overloading. The private chopper took off again successfully for its scheduled journey after offloading one of the passengers and some luggage, the police said. Although police did not specify the reasons of the chopper making force-landing, an aviation expert said that de-boarding of a passenger and some luggage could be linked to the maximum load carrying capacity of the helicopter.
An official said, “As the helicopter was unable to get the required altitude to fly, some luggage was also off- loaded. This is not a major issue. The chief minister flew in the same chopper and attended all events in Aurangabad as per schedule.”
This is the latest in a series of incidents involving Fadnavis while flying in a helicopter. On July 7, before take-off in a helicopter from Alibaug near Mumbai, Fadnavis narrowly missed being struck by the chopper’s tail rotor when the pilot inexplicably started the engines before the chief minister had boarded. Security guards accompanying Fadnavis had then pushed him out of harm’s way.