AI Mumbai-Kochi Air India flight was grounded minutes before it took off and was consequently delayed by several hours due to a technical hitch here on Saturday morning, official sources said.
A technical hitch, which has not been detailed, was found in the Airbus A-319 Flight 054 with around 115 passengers, including four infants, on board in the last-minute pre-flight checks, around 5.30 a.m., shortly before it was air-borne.
It returned to the bay and while aircraft maintenance engineers examined the aircraft to rectify the problems, all the passengers remained inside the aircraft.
Almost two hours later, the aircraft was declared unworthy of flight and the passengers were deboarded and returned to the terminal building.
After a replacement aircraft was arranged around 8.50 a.m., the passengers again checked-in and the flight left for Kochi after a delay of more than three-and-half hours