Suspect 'grenade' on Air India jet part of drill: Report

NEW DELHI (AFP) - A suspected grenade found on an Air India plane turned out to be a dummy object placed on the jet during a security drill, the Press Trust of India reported on Saturday.

The drill conducted on a Boeing Air India 747 aircraft was part of a series by the National Security Guards to check alertness of crew members, the national news agency said, quoting unnamed government officials.

The crew got a scare when they found the suspicious item - reportedly the plastic casing from a grenade - in the aircraft, the news agency said.

They reported the object to security officials when the plane, which was flying from Mumbai, landed at Jeddah in Saudi Arabia early on Saturday, the news agency said.

An Air India official, who did not wish to be named, told AFP that "a suspicious object was found on the plane" but said that it turned out to be "harmless".

The Indian Express daily reported the object was a "plastic casing" of a grenade used during an anti-terror drill.

The Press Trust of India, citing government officials, added earlier media reports saying the jet was used as an emergency standby aircraft for Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his recent United States visit were untrue.

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