The fighter jet that went missing with two pilots onboard was found in the thick forest around 60 km from Tezpur, Assam. The sad part of the news is that there is no clue of the two pilots aboard the fighter aircraft
Finally, in a news that came out to be both happy and sad at the same time, the wreckage of the missing Su-30 MKI has been found. The fighter jet that went missing with two pilots onboard was found in the thick forest around 60 km from Tezpur, Assam. The sad part of the news is that there is no clue of the two pilots aboard the fighter aircraft. The crew had two officers – one Flight Lieutenant and a Squadron Leader.
The wreckage was located 9,000 feet on the spur of a hill at Rupa Valley. The jet lost radar contact with the base at the same place where its wreckage is now found, 60 km north-west of Tezpur. Ground parties are standing by to be airdropped to the crash site as the area is totally inaccessible by foot. They will search for flight data recorder which could probably explain the reason behind the crash and the missing crew.
Attempts of Army's search parties to reach the crash site by trekking cross country was also halted due to bad weather, thick vegetation and steep gradient of the terrain.
Su-30 fighter jets, C-130 aircraft, Advanced Light Helicopters and Chetak helicopters were pressed in for the search and rescue efforts but bad weather here too pressed in the search for a halt.
Now, a Su-30, C-130 aircraft with electro-optical payload and ALH helicopters of the IAF are being utilised to retrieve the remains of the combat jet after the weather is stable.
Efforts were on to send in a team of IAF's Garud commandos through a helicopter at the crash site.
China on Wednesday said it had "no information" on the missing jet. This is the latest in a series of mishaps involving the Sukhoi.
The Air Force has already lost 4 out of 240 Su-30 MKIs. Since 2011, the armed forces have lost over 60 aircraft and helicopters in crashes, which have killed over 80 people.
The Su-30 MKI took off on a routine training mission at around 10:30 am on 23rd May 2017 and lost radio contact around 11:30 am when it was around 60 km from Tezpur.
The aircraft was a part of a two-aircraft formation. The area was identified as Doulasang area of Arunachal Pradesh, which borders China.
The aircraft was declared overdue after an hour at around 12:30 pm. Search and Rescue operations were launched to locate the aircraft and the pilots with the help from the civil administration.
An aerial search was hampered due to incessant rain and dense clouds. A Court of Inquiry has been ordered to investigate the cause of the accident.
The crashed aircraft was inducted in Tezpur air base on 15th June 2009. At present, Tezpur has two squadrons of SU-30 aircraft, each comprising 12 to 16 aircraft.
About Su-30 MKI
- Su-30 MKI is a twin cockpit multi-role all-weather air superiority fighter.
- It has air–to–air refuelling capability.
- It is India’s frontline fighter aircraft.
- The aircraft is now being manufactured by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited in Nasik.
- Its origins are in Russia where it was designed and developed.
- It was inducted into the Indian Air Force in 1997 and since then, it has undergone various upgradations.