At least 13 flights have to be diverted out of the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport, New Delhi on Saturday, November in the evening due to VIP movements reported news agency ANI. Several flights which were lined up for arrivals were delayed or diverted from Delhi. Most of the passengers waiting at the airport had to face long queues and chaos. In a video released by news agency ANI, it appeared like a total mess as people could be seen sitting on the floor with their luggage all around. The crowd inside the airport was large in number without any proper security or sitting arrangement.

As per a TOI report, the cause of such delay was a mix of VIP movement and the flights not sticking to their schedules, as a result of which diversions occurred between 5:30 pm to 6:15 pm. The Passengers were not relieved as the delays continued for hours and many flights within the span getting postponed and affected. Some carriers like Jet Airways tweeted about the inconvenience and informed the passengers to check the status of their flights before checking in. Our flights are affected due to VVIP movement said Jet Airways in a tweet. “#9Wupdate: Due to air traffic congestion consequent to VVIP movement at #Delhi airport, some of our flights are affected. (1/2)”, they also posted a customized link for all the travellers to check the status of their respective flights.

ANI reported that a number of VIP charted planes landed at the Delhi Airport which resulted in the delay. Here is the video of the Terminal 1 posted by the agency on Twitter.

Passengers who faced inconvenience due to the delay voiced their criticism of the pathetic management on twitter and expressed their annoyance over the situation. “Absurd flight delay – over 3 hours for @PMOIndia movement in Delhi airport. Never heard of such inefficient management,” wrote a twitter user tagging Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the tweet seeking action over the matter.

It is still not clear what sort of VVIP landing caused the whole chaos. However, a TOI report suggested that such delays might happen again in future due to the ongoing maintenance of the runway 11-29. Delhi International Airport Limited in a statement said, “Runway 11-29 will remain closed for maintenance for three days from 12.01 am on November 7 to 7 am on November 10. The scheduled time was chosen after a careful evaluation by airport operator in close consultation with Airports Authority of India (AAI) and airlines. Given the onset of fog season, the time was jointly agreed from the perspective of safety and operational reliability.”

Being one of the busiest airports in the country, the Delhi airport on an average see at least 1200 flights departure and arrivals every day. 

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