All on board — the chief minister, two pilots and two staffers from the state secretariat were safe. Gehlot was travelling in the twin engine Italian-made Augusta which was purchased by the state government during Vasudhara Raje’s tenure.
He was on the way to Churu from Jaipur to inaugurate the Urmilla sports complex building in Nyayveli village. The snag developed 30 minutes after the chopper took off from the Jaipur airport at 11am.
“The pilots detected a snag in the rotation of blades after sudden jerks. They were left with no choice but to make an emergency landing. Luckily, they saw a plain area on the roadside, 11 km from Pilani in Jhunjhunu district, and landed,” a senior government official said.
The news of the sudden landing of the CM’s chopper spread like a wild fire in the neighbouring villages. Several villagers ran towards the chopper to meet Gehlot. The police, however, arrived on the spot and arranged a private vehicle for Gehlot, who resumed his journey to Churu. The CM went ahead with his scheduled plan, and later also attended a programme in Hissar. He returned to Jaipur on a state aircraft by evening.
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