Midair scare: Gilani plane makes emergency landing

Yousaf Raza Gilani

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan PM Yousaf Raza Gilani, several federal ministers and a senior army general had a narrow escape on Tuesday when their aircraft made emergency landings in two separate incidents, causing a minor scare.

A special aircraft carrying Gilani and other federal ministers made an emergency landing shortly after taking off from a military airbase in Rawalpindi.The aircraft, which was going to Sukkur in Sindh province, returned to Chaklala airbase shortly after take-off and made an emergency landing as it had developed technical problems, TV news channels quoted officials as saying. All persons on board the aircraft, including Gilani and information minister Firdous Ashiq Awan, were safe, officials said.

The pilot informed the control tower of technical problems and then made the emergency landing.The PM and other ministers were on their way to Sindh to participate in special events to be held on Wednesday to mark death anniversary of president Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto.In the other incident, a Pakistan army general and other personnel had a narrow escape when a military helicopter made an emergency landing after developing technical problems.

No hurry to reopen Nato routes: PM

Pakistan PM Yousaf Raza Gilani has said his government is in no hurry to reopen the Nato supply routes that were closed after a cross-border air strike last year and that a decision on the issue will be made only after evolving consensus among political parties. Gilani made the remarks during an interaction with reporters on board his special plane while flying back to Pakistan from China on Monday. – TOI