Kollam (Kerala): The departure of President
Pratibha Patil from here for Thiruvananthapuram was delayed by
35 minutes on Wednesday morning as the air conditioning system of the
IAF helicopter she was to board developed a technical problem,
The President later left for the state capital by another
helicopter arranged by the Air Force. Patil was scheduled to
lay the foundation stone of an off-campus of Indira Gandhi
National Open University in the capital at 11.00 am.
According to sources, the President boarded the helicopter
as per her day`s schedule, but had to disembark as the air
conditioning system of the helicopter was found not working.
The President and her entourage had to wait for 35 minutes
at the Ashramam maidan here, where arrangements had been made
for her travel to the state capital.
Patil, who was to depart from here at 10.10 am, could leave
only at 10.45 am, sources said.
Patil had arrived here on August 29 and inaugurated the
first President`s Trophy boat race at the Ashtamudi lake yesterday. Security had been tightened in and around the town
for the last three days in view of the Presidential visit.