OTV Lands in Yet Another Controversy for Airing Inaccurate News on Odisha CM

Bhubaneswar: Odisha’s so-called number one television channel OTV has landed in yet another controversy for airing inaccurate news on Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik.

A day after the TV channel carried an inaccurate news report raising questions on Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s aerial survey of flood affected areas on August 31, the Airport Authority of India (AAI) gave a detailed clarification regarding the Chief Minister’s air travel, while describing the media reports as distortion of facts.

“It is learnt that there was miscommunication in the media about flight details and timings”, the AAI said in a letter to Joint Secretary to Odisha Chief Minister without mentioning name of the TV channel.
The AAI clarified that the Chief Minister’s flight departed on 31.08.2020 at 1012 UTC (15421ST) from Bhubaneswar and landed back at Bhubaneswar at 1031UTC (1601 IST). All the timings given w.r.t flight movements are in UTC only as per ICAO standards. To get 1ST timings 0530 Hrs are added to UTC timings. (IST=UTC4+05:30).

As per the SOP for handling of VVIP Flights, VVIP means Hon’ble President, Vice President, Prime Minister of India and Foreign Heads of state/Govt, the AAI said.

Actual flying time is 19 minutes excluding warm-up time, startup time at apron and taxi time to runway and return to apron after landing, it added.

Notably, OTV had mentioned in its report that there was no VVIP movement on 31.08.2020. The report further stated that travelling time of the helicopter was 19 minutes including take-off and landing time. The OTV report also mentioned that it is not possible for the helicopter used by CM helicopter to reach the flood-affected areas and come back in 19 minutes.

The AAI clarified that the CMs of States don’t come under the VVIP category. Therefore, Naveen Patnaik’s movement was not mentioned as VVIP movement. It also clarified that the actually travelling air time of the helicopter used by the CM was a total of 19 minutes excluding take-off and landing time.

The helicopter used by CM is a high quality, twin-engine helicopter. These types of helicopters will take only 5 to 6 minutes of air time to reach the severely flood affected areas from Bhubaneswar.

The video and photograph of the CM’s aerial visit were released to the media on that day itself.

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