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'Inexperienced' Raja Bhaiya crash lands chopper?

By Sharat Pradhan
March 22, 2009 22:53 IST
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A private helicopter carrying Samajwadi Party leader Raghuraj Pratap Singh crash landed on a highway at Dhimi village under Hathgawan police circle of Pratapgarh district, on Sunmday evening.

A former minister, Singh who is better known as 'Raja Bhaiya', was rushed to a private hospital in Allahabad where he was stated to be "out of danger."

He was stated to have suffered a fracture of the lower limb. His trainer, Bhutto was also hurt.

According to a senior police official, the feudal lord-turned-politician was flying the two-seater helicopter along with his trainer pilot along the banks of the Ganga river , when he lost control and crash landed on the highway .

His family members and associates were however tight-lipped about the whole affair, understandably because Raja Bhaiya had not cared to get himself registered as a trainee pilot, which is mandatory.

One of his aides who responded on his telephone at his residence said, "There was no helicopter crash ; Raja Bhaiya was in a car which met with an accident near Allahabad."

However, confirming the incident, Uttar Pradesh's Additional Director General of Police Brij Lal said, "The helicopter is probably owned by Raja Bhaiya himself ; but what we are trying to find out was whether he had taken the necessary permission of the Air Traffic Control to fly the aircraft ."

He said, "We are also trying to confirm whether he possessed the desired licence for flying ; he would face penal action if the mandatory requirements were not met."

According to Lal, "the former minister would also be charged for putting the lives of common people at peril by attempting to and on a highway."
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Sharat Pradhan