Mumbai: The aircraft that crashed in Mumbai Thursday belonged to UY Aviation, a firm that was barred by the Maharashtra government after a mishap last year involving one of its choppers and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.
On Thursday, the aircraft went down on an under-construction site in suburban Ghatkopar, killing five people — two pilots, two engineers and one pedestrian. The plane was a VT-UPZ, King Air C-90 with a capacity of 12 passengers that the company reportedly purchased from the Uttar Pradesh government in 2014.
UY Aviation is owned by businessman Deepak Kothari through his firm UY Industries.
The Fadnavis scare came in July 2017 in Alibaug when the chief minister was about to board the chopper and the pilot took off. Fadnavis had turned back in the nick of time. The twin-engine helicopter manufactured in 1995 was chartered by UY Aviation.
After the incident, the government had instructed two of its empanelled aviation firms — Aloft Aviation and Adonis Aviation Enterprises — not to supply aircraft and choppers from UY Aviation.
“We did not have any direct business understanding with UY Aviation. We have empanelled Aloft and Adonis to supply aircrafts to us as and when we need them. These companies sourced the chopper from UY Aviation, but after the Alibaug incident, we strictly told Aloft and Adonis that we don’t want aircraft from UY Aviation anymore,” a senior government official at the state’s general administration department told ThePrint.
UY Aviation is a new company, incorporated in 2015, and posted a revenue of Rs 2.77 crore in 2015-16, as per the firm’s records. While its principal business is to operate non-schedule air transport services, the company has also been planning to expand to offering maintenance, repair and overhaul services, ground handling, warehousing, air cargo, operating flying schools, airport hospitality and so on.