2 Indian Air Force pilots die as microlight aircraft crashes in Assam
The accident took place around 12:30pm when the aircraft, which had just the two pilots, crashed at Sumoipari.Updated: Feb 15, 2018 23:18 IST
Two Indian Air Force pilots were killed on Thursday after a microlight aircraft they were flying in crashed at Majuli district in Assam.
The accident took place around 12:30pm when Microlight Virus SW-80, which had two pilots, crashed at Sumoimari, an isolated location on the world’s largest river island.
The deceased were identified as Wing Commanders Jai Paul James and T Vats. The aircraft had taken off from Jorhat air force station around noon on a routine border sortie.
“We got information around 1:00 pm from IAF than one of their aircraft had gone off the radar. Locals near Sumoipari informed about the crash. A police team has reached the spot and investigations are on,” Majuli deputy commissioner Pallav Gopal Jha said.
District officials quoting eyewitnesses said that the two-seater aircraft crashed with the big noise. A court of inquiry has been set up to investigate the cause of the accident.
The pilots attempted an emergency landing but the aircraft crashed at a sand bar in the northern part of the district and went up in flames, said Tezpur-based defence spokesperson Lt. Col. Harshvardhan Pande.
IAF personnel from the 10 Wing Air Force Station in Jorhat have rushed to the spot while police and senior officials of the district have also set out for the crash site which has to be reached by boat.
A senior IAF official said that more details of the crash can only be obtained after the team reaches the site.
(with PTI inputs)
First Published: Feb 15, 2018 16:36 IST