Live flying bat forces NYC-bound plane back to New Delhi

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An Air India flight from New Delhi to New York City had to be rerouted back to New Delhi when, 30 minutes after takeoff, a crazed bat started flying around the cabin to the shock and horror of passengers.

Video of the bat batting around the overhead bins was released to the Scottish Sun.

“On arrival, it was learnt that crew members saw a bat inside the cabin,” the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) officials told news agency ANI. “Wildlife staff were called to catch and take away the bat. The aircraft landed safely at around 3:55 am, and later it was declared Aircraft on Grounded (AoG).”

Once the plane was back on land at the Delhi Indira Gandhi International Airport, wildlife staff were called in. The plane reportedly underwent a complete fumigation, after which the bat’s carcass was retrieved from the business class cabin.

“The probable reason/cause may be loading vehicles like those for catering,” an Air India official told Business Today. “All the time rats/bats come from their vehicle.”

The incident comes as India continues to be devastated by the COVID-19 pandemic, which may have originated in bats, before being passed on through another animal, and then into humans.

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