Imphal: Normal flight services at Imphal International Airport of the violence-hit state of India were affected on Sunday afternoon over sighting of a drone-like object, which the officials described as an unidentified flying object (UFO).
According to Kashmir Media Service, two flights were diverted and three others delayed. Services normalised after around three hours.
“Due to sighting of an unidentified flying object within Imphal controlled airspace, two flights have been diverted and three departing flights have been delayed. Flight operations commenced after receipt of clearance from the competent authority,” a statement issued by Airport Director Chipemmi Keishing said.
An official of the Air Traffic Control (ATC) said they received a message from the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) at 2.30 pm, informing them that a UFO was found near the airport.
“The UFO was visible with bare eyes moving westwards of the airfield till 4 pm,” the official said.
The diverted flights included an Indigo flight from Kolkata which was initially instructed “to hold overhead” and was diverted to Guwahati after 25 minutes.
The volatile Manipur state is bordered by Nagaland, Mizoram and Assam, besides sharing an international border with Myanmar to its east.