Jet Airways hijack case: Man gets lifer, Rs 5 crore fine imposed

Vicky Nanjappa

New Delhi, June 12: A court has sentenced one person to life imprisonment in connection with the Jet Airways hijacking case. The court has also imposed a fine of Rs 5 crore on Birju Kishor Salla, while convicting him under the provisions of the Anti-Hijacking Act of 2016.

Out of the fine amount, each pilot will get compensation of Rs. one lakh, each air hostess will get Rs. 50,000 and each passenger will be paid Rs. 25,000 for misery undergone by them.

On October 30 2017, a threat note was found on a Jet Airways flight that was headed towards Delhi from Mumbai. During the flight, an airhost found a threat note in the washroom of the business class of the plane which stated that "There are hijackers on board and explosives on the plane". This threat was brought to the notice of the Captain of the flight who sought permission of Air Traffic Controller in Ahmedabad for an emergency landing.

Initially, the case was registered and investigated by Crime Branch, Ahmedabad and one passenger namely Birju Kishor Salla was arrested on suspicion. NIA re-registered the case under sections 3(1), 3(2)(a) and 4(b) of Anti Hijacking Act 2016 on November 7 2017 and took over investigation.

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During the investigation, clinching evidence regarding preparation of the threat note and its placement on the plane was collected. It was further established that accused Birju Kishor Salla intentionally committed the act to disrupt the operation of aircraft (9W339 of Jet Airways) while on board.

He also jeopardised the safety of the passengers and crew members on board by an intentional act of putting printed threat letter inside the toilet of the said aircraft. On 23/01/2018, the chargesheet was filed in the NIA Special Court at Ahmedabad against accused Birju Kishor Salla under sections 3(1), 3(2)(a) and 4(b) of Anti Hijacking Act 2016.

This was the first case registered under Anti Hijacking Act 2016 by NIA and has resulted in sentencing of the accused to life imprisonment and an exemplary fine of Rs. 5 Crore.

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