New Delhi: In the wake of Arunachal Pradesh
Chief Minister Dorjee Khandu`s death in a chopper crash, the
BJP on Thursday demanded that all helicopters belonging to the
government-owned Pawan Hans be subjected to "thorough and
"BJP demands immediate, thorough and rigid inspection of
all the 40 helicopters with Pawan Hans afresh and assurance of
its overall safety to all the passengers. The government must
also immediately okay acquisition of 15 new helicopters worth
Rs 600 crore as proposed by the company," BJP spokesperson
Prakash Javadekar said.
He also insisted that old helicopters should be phased
out immediately and replaced by new ones. The Rajya Sabha MP
said the government should provide budgetary support for
acquiring 25 more choppers.
The main opposition alleged that the poor state of
affairs in Pawan Hans was due to government apathy over the
"It serves as the lifeline in North-East. Since its
inception in 1985, the government has practically abandoned
the company to its fate. Unfortunately, those who were at the
helm of affairs in the company also converted it into a
financial company rather than a helicopter company," Javadekar
The BJP expressed shock over Pawan Hans "practically"
not acquiring new helicopters in the last 25 yrs.
"It continues to function with old machines, which has
created doubt about the safety of its services. No wonder for
these reasons the Meghalaya government has stopped operations
of Pawan Hans in the state," Javadekar said.
"BJP hopes the government will come out of its slumber
and act swiftly to modernise the undertaking and guarantee
safety to the passengers," he added.