Two SpiceJet pilots arrested for fraudulent CPLs

Two SpiceJet pilots were yesterday arrested by the Rajasthan Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) for "fraudulently obtaining commercial pilot licences (CPL) from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA)".

Three JetLite and Jet Airways pilots would also be shortly arrested on the same charges. Earlier, the agency had arrested one Rahul Yadav who had flown 1,000 hours for Indian Airlines.

The licences of seven pilots and two flying school instructors had been recently suspended by the DGCA.

These included Nidhi Vashishtha, Rahul Yadav, Malini MR, Priya Sharma, Rakesh Mehta, Pallavi Hemant, Shaheed Maliq, Mahaveer Singh Beniwal and Mohindar Kumar.

According to IG, ACB, Umesh Mishra, SpiceJet captain Anuj Kumar Chaudhary and co-pilot Amit Mundra - both working in Delhi - were arrested in Jaipur yesterday. Mishra added Muzaffarnagar-resident Chaudhary had flown about 4,000 hours while Amit Mundra hailing from Nagaur in Rajasthan had flown 2,800 hours for the private airline.

The flying hour certificates had been issued by Rajasthan state flying school chief flying inspector Mohindar Kumar Chaudhary and his counterpart at Haryana Institute of Civil Aviation in Hisar, Mahavir Singh Beniwal.

ASP Bhupendra Yadav, investigating officer said, JetLite and Jet Airways had been issued notices seeking details of three other pilots including Rajesh Mirani, Nitin Jain and Sanjeev Gupta.

The Rajasthan ACB had played the role of whistleblower as it had claimed, nearly four months ago, it had uncovered rackets involving preparation of fake documents for obtaining CPLs.