An Air India flight from Delhi to Muscat was diverted to Jamnagar Air Force base in Gujarat on Sunday night after a 33-year-old passenger suffered a cardiac arrest onboard. After landing at the Indian Air Force base, the patient was rushed to the Jamnagar civil hospital accompanied by an air force doctor.
"AI 973 Delhi Muscat flt diverted to Jamnagar Air Force Base at 2230 with an Indian passenger aged 33 sufferng cardiac arrest in flight. IAF responded promptly. Diversion to civil airfield wd hv taken more time. Patient shifted to hospital accompanied by IAF doc," PRO Defence Gujarat Puneet Chadha said in a tweet late on Sunday night.
He said the patient was taken to Guru Govind Singh Hospital for treatment. It is rare when commercial flights are allowed to land on IAF bases. However, Mr. Chadha said in the tweet that IAF responded quickly as the flight diversion to civil airfield would have taken more time.
Meanwhile, allaying fears among growing number of Israelis using Air India flights to Delhi, India's national carrier has rubbished as "baseless" the claims in certain sections of the Israeli media that it is on the verge of bankruptcy.
Some Israeli media outlets recently reported that Air India was trapped in huge debt running over a billion and may collapse soon. They also advised Israeli passengers, who have booked their tickets of the Indian carrier, to take necessary steps to recover their money.
"Air India (AI) strongly refutes the canards being spread by a section of the media in Israel and a few web/online portals about the airline being on the verge of collapse. This is totally baseless, false and hatched to malign the image of the organisation and thwart its rising graph by vested interest," according to a statement issued by AI's Tel Aviv office.
Air India's Tel Aviv-Delhi sector is considered as a major diplomatic breakthrough given that the flights use Saudi and Omani airspace, registering an impressive growth with average seat occupancy around 80 per cent making it one of the most lucrative sector.
The Indian carrier started its operation on the route on March 22 last year with three flights per week. The rising demand forced the airline to increase its flights from three to four per week.