CM’s aircraft arrives in Nov, pilot, engineer re-employed

CHANDIGARH: Anticipating the delivery of a 10-seater aircraft worth Rs 41 crore for use of Governor, Chief Minister and other dignitaries by November, Haryana has offered re-employment to a pilot and an aeronautical engineer whom it had shown the door nearly three years back.

Sushil Manav

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 16

Anticipating the delivery of a 10-seater aircraft worth Rs 41 crore for use of Governor, Chief Minister and other dignitaries by November, Haryana has offered re-employment to a pilot and an aeronautical engineer whom it had shown the door nearly three years back.

The Tribune has learnt that the state government has entered into an out-of-the-court settlement with pilot Capt Dinesh Bansal and engineer Harpreet Singh Saini that they would not claim salary etc for the period they were out of the job as their petitions against removal are pending before the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

A senior officer of the Haryana Civil Aviation Department confirmed the development and said while Bansal has joined duty, Saini was expected to join very soon.

“They have given government affidavit to us with regard to the terms of settlement,” he added.

The officer, however, did not divulge details of the terms of the settlement.

Sources, however, confirmed that they have agreed to withdraw their petitions and they would not press for salary and other benefits for the period when they were out of job.

The BJP government that came to power in October 2014 had sent three pilots and an aeronautical engineer who were on its rolls at that time home. This was because the state did not have any aircraft of its own and Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had refused to buy one for the sake of austerity.

The government’s only 10-seater airplane — Super King Air B 200 — which the state government had bought in 2006 was irreparably damaged after it caught fire while taking off from Chandigarh for New Delhi with the then Governor Jagannath Pahadia on board on March 27, 2014.

Those relieved by the state government in May 2015 were senior executive pilot Wing CommanderB Nanda (retd) and pilots Capt Kapil Khatana, Capt Dinesh Bansal andaeronautical engineer Harpreet S Saini.

All of them had approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court against their removal and the cases are pending.

Sources said that Wing Commander B Nanda (retd) has since joined a private airliner while Khatana had died due to illness on March 6, 2016.

Remember 2014?

The BJP government that came to power in October 2014 had sent three pilots and an aeronautical engineer who were on its rolls at that time home. This was because the state did not have any aircraft of its own and Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had refused to buy one for the sake of austerity

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