US to assist in crash probe, hunt on for black box
Air India on Sunday asked US authorities to assist in the probe into Saturday's Mangalore air crash, which killed 158 people.
Air India chairman and managing director Arvind Jadhav said a local representative of the US Federal Aviation Authority had been requested for this purpose while representatives of Boeing were already in Mangalore to expedite the probe.
The black box (digital flight data recorder), the key to determining the cause of the crash, remained untraceable after 30 hours of search. However, another vital element, the cockpit voice recorder, was recovered and handed over to the Directorate General of Civil Aviation to be taken to Delhi.
The hunt for the black box will resume on Monday.
"Necessary records pertaining to the airplane and crew have been taken for detailed analysis," the civil aviation ministry said in a statement.
By Sunday evening, 136 bodies had been identified.
"The remaining 22 will be identified after DNA profile test," Mangalore police commissioner Seemanth Kumar Singh said.
The forensic team has begun collecting DNA samples but the reports will take at least seven days as they will have to be prepared at the Central Forensic Science laboratory, Hyderabad.
Meanwhile, the government may consider the setting up of an independent body to investigate air accidents, PTI reported civil aviation minister Praful Patel as saying.
Air India announced compensation of Rs 10 lakh for victims 12 years and over, Rs 5 lakh for those less than 12 years, and Rs 2 lakh for the survivors.