8 days on, wreck­age of AN-32 plane sighted in Arunachal Pradesh

The Hindu Business Line - - NEWS -

The wreck­age of the AN-32 air­craft of the In­dian Air Force was spot­ted on Tues­day 16 km north of Lipo in Arunachal Pradesh, eight days after it went miss­ing after tak­ing off from As­sam’s Jorhat.

The air­craft had 13 peo­ple on board and the IAF said ef­forts are on to es­tab­lish the sta­tus of the oc­cu­pants.

“The wreck­age of the air­craft was spot­ted on Tues­day, 16 kms north of Lipo, north east of Tato at an ap­prox­i­mate el­e­va­tion of 12,000 ft by the IAF Mi-17 he­li­copter un­der­tak­ing search in the ex­panded search zone,” the IAF said in a state­ment.

“Ef­forts are now con­tin­u­ing to es­tab­lish the sta­tus of oc­cu­pants and es­tab­lish sur­vivors. Fur­ther de­tails will be com­mu­ni­cated as the re­cov­ery ac­tions progress,” it said.

The Rus­sian-ori­gin AN-32 air­craft lost con­tact on the af­ter­noon of June 3 after tak­ing off from Jorhat for Menchuka ad­vanced land­ing ground near the border with China.

A to­tal of eight air­crew and five pas­sen­gers were on board the air­craft.

The AN-32 is a twin-en­gine tur­bo­prop trans­port air­craft and the IAF cur­rently op­er­ates a size­able num­ber of AN-32. The IAF had launched a mas­sive op­er­a­tion to trace the miss­ing air­craft but the search was badly hit by poor weather con­di­tions.

The as­sets de­ployed for the op­er­a­tion in­cluded Sukhoi-30 air­craft in ad­di­tion to a fleet of C-130J and AN-32 planes and Mi-17 and ALH he­li­copters. The ground forces in­cluded troops from the Army, Indo-Ti­betan Border Po­lice and state po­lice.

ISRO’s Car­tosat and RISAT satel­lites were also used to take im­ages of the area around Menchuka.

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