A SpiceJet plane coming from Goa made an emergency landing at Hyderabad airport on Wednesday night after smoke was observed in the cabin, news agency PTI has reported citing officials.

As per officials, aviation regulator DGCA has ordered probe.

According to the DGCA official, the plane made an emergency landing due to smoke observed in the cockpit.

The plane, SpiceJet Q400 aircraft VT-SQB (Goa- Hyderabad) was carrying over 86 people onboard, and they landed safely at the airport and disembarked through the emergency exit. However, one passenger sustained minor scratches on the feet while leaving the aircraft.

Due to the emergency landing, as many as nine flights were diverted on Wednesday night after the incident at around 11 pm.

The aircraft landed safely and passengers disembarked at the L1 taxiway through the emergency exit. One passenger sustained minor scratches on the feet while leaving from the plane, DGCA said adding that all passengers disembarked safely.

The pilot of flight SG 3735 noticed smoke and alerted the Air Traffic Controller (ATC), who in turn alerted the ground staff. The plane made a safe landing on Wednesday night, the DGCA spokesperson said.

“SpiceJet Q400 aircraft operating from Goa to Hyderabad landed safely at its destination on October 12 after smoke was observed in the cabin during descent. Passengers were safely disembarked,” an airline spokesperson said.

Information regarding the incident was also shared by an on board passenger named Srikanth Mulupal. On Twitter, he wrote, “Respected sir or to whomsoever it may concern. Night we were returning to hyd from goa within the (Spicejet), suddenly there was smoke all around inside the plane starting from Nagpur to Hyderabad…”

“It took 20 minutes from there and we all the passengers suffered and blacked out with fear. Luckily we landed alive and safely… But what if something happens and who would be responsible, this happened clearly due to the neglence of the crew and respective department,” he further added.

SpiceJet has been facing operational and financial headwinds in recent times, and it is already under enhanced surveillance of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). The regulator had also directed the airline to operate only 50 per cent of its total flights till October 29.

Last month, the DGCA extended the cap on SpiceJet’s operating capacity until the end of October.

As per an order issued on Wednesday, the regulator has asked SpiceJet to operate at up to 50% of the number of flight departures approved under the Summer Schedule 2022 till 29 October. The summer schedule for domestic airlines is valid from 27 March to 29 October. As per the schedule, SpiceJet was allowed to have 4,192 flight departures per week during the period.

Meanwhile, SpiceJet deposited the Tax Deducted at Source (TDS) of all employees for the financial year 2021-22, according to an internal communication. As per the communication, a significant portion of provident fund contributions of all employees is also being credited. In September, the loss-making airline hiked salaries of its captains and senior first officers by around 20 per cent with effect from October.

Prior to that, to rationalise cost, it had decided to place certain pilots on leave without pay (LWP) for a period of three months. SpiceJet said the measure, which is in line with the company’s policy of not retrenching any employee which the airline steadfastly followed even during the COVID pandemic, will help rationalize the pilot strength vis-a-vis the aircraft fleet.