An Army Aviation Cheetah helicopter flying an operational sortie near Arunachal Pradesh’s Bomdila crashed on Thursday morning after losing contact with the ATC. Both pilots — Lt. Col Vinay Banu Reddy and Major Jaynta A — died in the crash.
In a press release, the Army said that the Cheetah helicopter lost contact with the ATC at around 9:15 am. “Five search parties of the Indian Army, SSB and ITBP were immediately launched. The wreckage of the aircraft was found near village Banglajaap East of Mandala," it said.
“With regret, we inform that the pilot and the co-pilot of the helicopter lost their lives in the accident," the statement added.
A Court of Inquiry has been ordered to ascertain the cause of the accident.
#BreakingNews | An Army Aviation Cheetah helicopter flying an operational sortie near Bomdila, Arunachal Pradesh was reported to have crashedWing(R) Commander Praful Bakshi with views@kaidensharmaa & @KamalikaSengupt share details with @GrihaAtul pic.twitter.com/iHqHoKw9D5
— News18 (@CNNnews18) March 16, 2023
Cheetah is a five-seater helicopter and has a world record in high-altitude flying.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh extended condolences to the families of the deceased pilots, saying, “We salute their sacrifice, service and devotion in the line of duty."
My heartfelt tributes to Lt Col VVB Reddy and Maj Jayanth A who lost their lives in a tragic Helicopter crash in Arunachal Pradesh. We salute their sacrifice, service and devotion in the line of duty. My deepest condolences to the bereaved families. https://t.co/oF14c2kNr4— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) March 16, 2023
A few days back, an Army helicopter with 20 airmen on board, had to make an emergency landing in the Lohawat area of Jodhpur on March 12 due to some technical glitch.
The helicopter had taken off from the Jodhpur airbase for Phalodi airbase.
A technical team fixed the glitch and the chopper was able to take off after about an hour’s delay to its destination.
According to Badri Prasad, Circle Inspector, Lohawat Police Station, two MI-17 helicopters of the Indian Air Force had taken off from the Jodhpur air force station for Phalodi air force station Sunday afternoon.
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