Government Policy

Nation had to face disaster if PM’s flight failed to land safely: Quader

Awami League General Secretary Obaidul Quader today said the nation had to face a "tragic disaster" if the Bangladesh Biman flight carrying Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina failed to make safe landing on November 27.

"The nation would have been plunged into the darkness of 'great crisis' had the aircraft carrying the prime minister failed to land safely. So, prayers were offered across the country seeking blessings for long life and good health of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina," he said.

Quader, also the Road Transport and Bridges Minister, made the remarks while talking to journalists after attending a doa and milad mahfil at Baitul Mukarram National Mosque after Jumma prayers.

The AL general secretary said special prayers were arranged all places of worships including mosques, temples, churches and pagodas across the country seeking long life and good health of Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina.

"As part of the programme, the doa and milad mahfil was organized at Baitul Mukarram National Mosque after Jumma prayers," he said.

Quader said the milad mahfil was arranged so that Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina could do more work for the development and progress of the country.

Replying to a question of journalists that whether emergency landing of the prime minister's flight is an accident or negligence, the minister said: "It cannot be said right at this moment as it may hamper the investigation."

Quader said it won't be proper to make comments before the probe body report. However, he said, six Biman officials were suspended for their negligence in duty on the basis of the initial investigation report.

The special VVIP flight (BG 1011) "Ranga Pravat" carrying the premier and 99 passengers, including her entourage, four cockpit crews 20 cabin crew and four aircraft engineers left Dhaka for the Hungarian capital at 9.14 am on November 27.

But due to technical fault it landed at Ashgabat, the Turkmenistan capital, at 2.15 pm Bangladesh time by changing its route. After arrival at Ashgabat, the on-duty engineers repaired the fault.

Later, the Biman's special VVIP flight carrying Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina started for Budapest at 6.37 pm after over four hours of unscheduled stopover at Ashgabat.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina went to Budapest on a four-day bilateral visit in conjunction with Budapest Water Summit 2016 at the invitation of Hungarian President Dr Janos Ader.

Biman Bangladesh Airlines on December 1 suspended its six officials who were involved with the inspection of the VVIP flight of the premier on the basis of a preliminary investigation report of the probe body.

Earlier on November 28, Biman formed a four-member probe committee, led by its Chief of Technical Captain Fazal Mahmud Chowdhury. The committee had been asked to submit its report by December 1 to the Biman Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer.

Based on the preliminary investigation report, six employees of Biman's directorate of engineering were found guilty. They were S M Rokonuzzaman, Samiul Haque, Lutfor Rahman, Milon Chandra Biswas, Zakir Hossain and Siddiqur Rahman.

Source: Bangladesh Sangbad Sangstha (BSS)