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Ex-Jet Airways Chairman Naresh Goyal, Wife Restricted From Leaving India

They were stopped by immigration authorities at Mumbai airport minutes before their aircraft was about to take off for London via Dubai.

Mumbai: Jet Airways founder Naresh Goyal and his wife Anita Goyal were on Saturday stopped from leaving the country by immigration authorities at Mumbai airport minutes before their aircraft was about to take off for London via Dubai, an official said.

The couple was on board Emirates Airways flight EK 507.

An airport official said the aircraft was called back to the parking bay at the time of taxiing.

“Naresh Goyal and wife Anita Goyal travelling to London on EK 507 were restricted from leaving the country,” the official said.

A source at Jet Airways said the couple was travelling with four big-sized suitcases.

“The checked-in baggage (suitcases) was in the name of Anita Goyal. The baggage was also offloaded, which delayed the flight by more than an hour,” the source added.

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The flight was scheduled to depart at 3.35 pm. After deplaning the couple, it took off after 5 pm.

Naresh Goyal could not be reached for comments.

In a late evening statement, Emirates only said it was cooperating with “relevant authorities”.

“Emirates is co-operating fully with the relevant authorities and we abide by the laws of the various countries we operate in,” the airline said. Calls to its spokesperson in India to seek clarity did not yield a response.

The specific reason for stopping the Goyal couple from taking the flight could not be immediately ascertained.

According to sources, Naresh Goyal was travelling for a meeting with executives of Gulf carrier Etihad and the Hinduja Group on revival plan for the now-defunct Jet Airways.

The airline stopped flying from April 17 due to an acute liquidity crisis.

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Earlier this week, Hinduja Group had said it was evaluating the opportunity to invest in Jet Airways.

In April, Jet Airways officers and staff association president Kiran Pawaskar had written to the Mumbai police commissioner demanding that passports of Goyal and other directors of the airline be impounded as the staff had not been paid salaries for several months.

Naresh and Anita Goyal had resigned from the board of Jet Airways, which the former founded 26 years ago, in March following a debt restructuring plan. He had also resigned as the airline’s chairman.

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