There was no breach of security or no friends were taken on a joy ride by Captain Barun Gupta in the CM’s chopper Agusta AW139, according to NV Ramana Reddy special secretary to the government (political and NRI affairs) and director of the protocol. Ramana is also managing director for Aviation Corporation.
Talking to Postnoon Ramana Reddy said that It was merely an allegation made by an outsourced employee who was removed from the service for making acts of breach of security twice. He was not an employee of the Aviation Corporation.
It was reported that the pilot of the chief minister’s helicopter had the other day given a joy ride to his girl friends. The chief secretary Pankaj Dwivedi had asked for an inquiry.
The preliminary investigation revealed that nothing of that sort had happened. Captain Barun Gupta reported to Ramana Reddy yesterday at the State secretariat in his office and clarified that there was no breach of security or no joy rides were given in the CM’s chopper. The ousted employee had planted the story to spite the pilot, it was said.
Ramana said the technical staff generally goes on a test flight and also landing before the take off happens for a VVIP. Since this chopper is being used by the chief minister, the test flights are very common keeping earlier accidents and other mishaps in mind. Ramana said that even if it is technical staff there will be entries in log book and that cannot be ignored.
Every flight or test flight is recorded and no one can escape from the reality.
Gupta also met Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy and explained to him on the allegations and about the test flight in March. When asked about the bad track record of Gupta in flying the choppers, and an earlier accident, Ramana agreed that this aspect has to be looked into.
On the other hand the CM at present is using private choppers for his election tour as he cannot use the official chopper because of the election code.
But there are records to show that the DGP in fact wanted to use the CM’s chopper for making an aerial survey of the Maoist infested areas in the State.
New chopper for the government?
Ramana agreed that there was a proposal with the State government to buy a new chopper for the VVIPs. Now the State government has one chopper at its disposal while the old one crashed with the former chief minister YS Rajasekhar Reddy.
There is every need for the government to buy a new chopper as a standby chopper is required. But the proposal has been pending since the last three years according to Ramana.