Haryana governor Jagannath Pahadia (82), his wife, Shanti Pahadia, and eight others, including two pilots, survived an air crash on Thursday morning here.
The Haryana government aircraft, call sign VT-HRA, type Beech Super King Air B-200, had taken off at 11.30am to ferry the governor to Delhi and climbed only 10 to 15 feet. "After getting airborne, it yawed to the left and crashed on its left wing," said a Haryana civil aviation department spokesman after the incident at the Chandigarh airport.
Taken out safely
Governor Pahadia was taken out of the aircraft safely, moved to the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), and discharged after check-up. The nine other passengers, including his wife, secretary to the governor, two ADCs (aide de camps), a doctor, two attendants and the pilots, wing commander Bhushan Nanda (retd) and captain Dinesh Bansal, are also safe.
Captain Bansal has minor injuries, for which he was treated at the medical inspection (MI) room of the air force station. The fire tenders from the station put off smoke that the pilot had reported after crash landing.
The aircraft tip and wings, the left especially, were damaged.
Briefing the media outside the crash site, Chandigarh deputy commissioner Mohammed Shayin said the aircraft had nosedived after takeoff. Pilot reports, later, attributed it to the jamming of the rudder (steering mechanism). "The director general of civil aviation has orders to investigate the specific causes of the accident," said the DC.
After the incident, the facility operated by the air force was under heavy security. Civil officers of Chandigarh and Haryana were on the spot.
The incident also affected the civilian flights, since the air force station and the domestic airport have a common runway and it was off limits after the incident. It delayed three domestic flights for over an hour.
Air India outbound Chandigarh-Delhi-Mumbai flight that was scheduled at 11am took off at about 1pm. GoAir and IndiGo Chandigarh-Mumbai flights were held back by 45 minutes to an hour. The operations became normal after 1.30pm.