NEW DELHI, June 13 (Xinhua) -- The Indian civil aviation authories have initiated a probe after a major collision between two passenger planes was averted at an airport in Uttar Pradesh state.
The incident took place on Tuesday when the two planes of private low-cost carriers SpiceJet and IndiGo came on the same runway while landing and take-off, respectively, at the Lal Bahadur Shastri Airport in Varanasi town, before being alerted by the air traffic control (ATC).
Varanasi is also the parliamentary constituency of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
"The carriers have reported the incident to Directorate General of Civil Aviation. A probe is on into the incident," an aviation official said Wednesday.
Both the airlines have also confirmed the incident.
In a statement, SpiceJet said "At Varanasi while taxing to the runway, the aircraft inadvertently crossed the runway holding point. The ATC asked the pilot to hold position and later cleared it for take-off."
SpiceJet said the the two pilots of the plane have been grounded, pending the probe.
On its part, IndiGo said: "IndiGo aircraft VT-IHS operating 3175 (Varanasi-Mumbai) in spite of having ATC clearance had to abort the takeoff at a low speed because the aircraft of another carrier came on the runway."
"IndiGo cockpit crew followed standard operating procedures in compliance with the ATC instructions. IndiGo has voluntarily reported the matter to the DGCA," the airline added.