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The Mumbai Police Crime Branch on Monday arrested a
44-year-old software programmer for allegedly making a hoax call about the presence of an explosive on a GoAir flight from Mumbai to Delhi on Saturday, delaying it by nearly six hours.
Sandeep Unni Menon, a resident of Vile Parle, had allegedly made an anonymous phone call to a Mumbai International Airport official at 8.27 pm on Saturday, minutes before GoAir flight 343 was scheduled to take off.
Menon was arrested from near Guru Nanak Petrol Pump on Andheri Kurla Road, Andheri East. "The caller had said the information about the bomb was provided to him by his accomplice, Ambarish Parekh, who was also supposed to travel by the same flight," said a Crime Branch officer.
GoAir officials found that there was a passenger named Ambarish Parekh among the 179 passengers on the flight, which was preparing for take off. The aircraft was shifted to the isolation bay and the cargo and passengers were checked.
While airline officials ensured that there was no bomb or any other explosive on the flight, the police took Parekh in custody. The flight eventually took off at 2 am. "Investigations indicate that Menon made the hoax call to get even with Parekh, who works at Qaboos University, Oman, due to professional differences," the officer said. Menon has worked with various universities and coaching classes helping them as a software programmer for virtual classrooms, he added.