According to news reports, the reported sighting of a round “unidentified flying object” hovering over the Prime Minister’s residence on New Delhi’s Lok Kalyan Marg on June 7 briefly unnerved security personnel posted in the VIP area and sparked a search that found nothing, putting their suspicions to rest, a senior security officer had said according to media reports.
After the search ended, the Perimeter Security Officer gave an “OK Report” to Delhi police. The airspace around the prime minister’s residence in a 2-kilometre radius is strictly a ‘no-fly zone’. The news was widely reported in the media, and Twitter went into overdrive poking fun about the incident.
Now about 12 days later, a security official with the IB (Intelligence Bureau) claims that the news about the alleged UFO was fake. Speaking to IndiaScoops.com, the IB official said, “It was certainly a false alarm or fake news. May be the SPG or NSG personnel or official who saw the so-called object first may have been hallucinating – it happens due to lack of sleep or stress. There is a standard operating procedure in such cases. The personnel have to immediately photograph and document any such unidentified object -whether flying or rotating or even stationary. In case the object continues moving, either in air or on land, towards the protected target area, the SPG security has the authority to challenge it and attack and shoot it down. There is no documentation of the so-called UFO. No photograph exists. Unless it appeared and disappeared in a fraction of seconds,” the IB official said, brushing aside the entire media hype as mere drama.
Special commissioner of police and Delhi police chief spokesperson Dependra Pathak had confirmed the sighting but said details of the incident cannot be revealed. “The sighting was reported but nothing threatening was found. More details cannot be shared keeping security reasons in mind,” Pathak told media persons.
But Pathak’s statement confirming the existence of the UFO was based on the statement of the SPG or NSG official who first saw it. Pathak himself does not say he saw the UFO. What if the SPG official was hallucinating as the IB officer said, or worse, if he was fibbing?
Who reported the sighting to the media. How did the news come out? The IB official who spoke to IndiaScoops.com explained that any trespass into the PM’s residence area is normally not shared with the media. And if it is, there is an official press statement issued. So the big question is: who first saw the UFO and who reported the happening to the press? Was it the IT cell of the BJP?
According to the officer cited in the first instance, who did not wish to be named, it was around 7.30 pm when the PM’s security unit of Delhi Police and the Delhi airport operations control centre, which comprises staff from the air force, Central Industrial Security Force and Delhi International Airport Ltd, received information about the sighting by Special Protection Group (SPG) personnel. The officer mentioned that the object could be a toy, possibly operated by paparazzi trying to get an exclusive pix of the PM’s residence or a kid playing in the vicinity.
With no delay, the alert was relayed to the Intelligence Bureau and National Security Guards. Delhi Air Traffic Control (ATC) was also put on high alert.
“The Delhi Police was also roped in, which ensured a temporary additional deployment on the outer periphery of the PM’s residence, while other security agencies performed the drill to hunt the suspected threat down,” the officer cited above said.
It isn’t the first time that such an incident has taken place. On September 17, 2017, around 10pm, the Delhi police security control room was informed about the sighting of a drone-like object around the Parliament area. But no object was captured on the ATC’s radar, which cannot capture small flying objects in any case.
In the same month, the Delhi Police control room informed ATC about the presence of a drone-like flying object over a hospital in a southern suburb. A search found nothing.
In November, the ministry of civil aviation unveiled draft regulations for use of drones in the country. The Directorate General of Civil Aviation is awaiting a response from the ministry of home affairs and the ministry of defence to finalise guidelines for the use of drones.
We had earlier reported that the so-called UFO or unidentified flying object that was spotted near PM Narendra Modi’s residence, which gave intelligence and security agencies a heart attack, was nothing but an electronic toy plane-like drone, easily available in Chinese markets for about Rs 3-5,000, (for the basic models) possibly belonging to the kids of one of the VVIPs living in the area. This information was doled out by a security officer.
“There are lots of rich VVIP kids living in the area, who like fancy toys. Our investigation has shown that the object was a remote-operated toy drone, possibly Chinese made – which are easily available in toy markets for as little as Rs 5,000/-. Such drones can fly for about 2 kilometers and reach a maximum height of about 200 feet. More professional drones are normally used for aerial photography and can go up to a maximum height of about 300 to 500 feet and can cost Rs 20-30,000/-.