Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Hot air balloon lands tourists in Ajmer prison

Two foreign tourists taking a joyride on a hot air balloon landed in Ajmer jail, albeit mistakenly, on Tuesday, leaving prison officials in a tizzy. The two sisters from West Indies had set sail along with an operator from Pushkar, who lost control of the balloon due to strong winds, which carried the three towards the neighboring Ajmer jail.

The balloon landed on the jail premises just when the roll call of inmates had finished, taking authorities by surprise. The tourists, both journalists on a tour of the ongoing Pushkar Fair, and the operator landed on the football field inside the jail and were detained by the authorities for interrogation.

They told jail officials that they wanted to take pictures of the fair from above, which is why they had chosen to take the ride. Both women are in their early 20s.

Officials said that they were alarmed as the incident amounted to a security lapse. A probe has been ordered and licenses to operate the hot air balloons, a big draw at the fair, have been suspended.

Sub inspector, Civil Lines police station, Hanuman Vishnoi said, “When the operator saw that they were sailing over the Anasagar Lake, he got alarmed and tried to control the movement of the balloon. The nearest landing was the police lines and even though he steered towards it, the strong winds made the balloon travel further up to Ajmer jail.”

Officials said that a total of three hot air balloons had lost control on Tuesday and gone astray. The other two were recovered near Vaishali Nagar and Topdara areas in Ajmer, 20 km away from Pushkar.

- Source:

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