A P3C patrol plane of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force sits on the taxi way at Sepang air force base, Malaysia. (AP Photo)
India on Wednesday received a fresh request from Malaysia to scan swathes of the southern Indian Ocean to locate the missing jet MH370, days after Kuala Lumpur had asked New Delhi to suspend search operations in the Bay of Bengal and Andaman Sea.
Malaysian authorities marked the new areas for search on a day PTI reported that China has sought permission from India to allow its warships to scour maritime zones in the Andaman Sea which come under the Indian Navy’s area of responsibility.
The new search area detailed by Malaysia spans 5,000 nautical miles south and south-west of Jakarta. The agency reported that Beijing had sent a formal request to New Delhi to allow Chinese warships, including a salvage vessel and two frigates, to enter Indian waters in the Andaman Sea to locate the missing plane. It said the Centre was yet to take a call on the Chinese request.
Earlier, on March 15, the Indian Navy had launched a hunt for the missing plane in the Bay of Bengal and Andaman Sea. Barely a year after it was inducted into the navy, the Boeing P-8I ‘submarine-hunter’ has been assigned to carry out one of the biggest search operations to be undertaken by the force.