The Indian Air Force (IAF) on Monday clarified, while reports of possible location of the crash site were received, no wreckage of AN-32 aircraft has been sighted so, which went missing from Jorhat in Assam.
“IAF is coordinating with Indian Army, various government and civil agencies to locate the missing aircraft. Search operations will continue from air and by ground parties of Indian Army through the night,” it mentioned in a statement.
The AN-32 aircraft of the IAF with 13 people on board has gone missing in Arunachal Pradesh. The plane which took off from Jorhat Air Base in Eastern Assam was heading to the Mechuka advance landing ground in Arunachal Pradesh which is at a height of 6,200 feet above sea level and is less than 30 km from the India China border.
#BREAKING | Indian Air Force’s AN-32 aircraft headed for Mechuka landing base with 13 on board goes missing after takeoff from Jorhat, Assam.
IAF launches search operation for missing plane; as per reports, Sukhoi-30 and C-130 aircraft's tasked for search mission. pic.twitter.com/GmfjnaIhwz
— Northeast Live (@NELiveTV) June 3, 2019
According to security sources the aircraft was on a routine air maintenance sortie and was supposed to land in Mechuka in West Siang at 1.30 pm. The aircraft had left Jorhat air base at 12.25 pm and was last contacted at 1 pm.
However, till now the whereabouts of the medium-lift transport aircraft is not known and it is feared that the aircraft has crashed. According to West Siang Deputy Commissioner Swetika Sachan, the aircraft was last spotted at Shi Yomi District near Tato Manigong.
The air force which has lost contact with the plane has already activated its resources to locate the missing aircraft. Sukhoi-30 and Hercules C-130 aircrafts have been scrambled to locate the missing aircraft.
Military helicopters are also on the lookout for the missing AN-32 aircraft. Meanwhile, Indo-Tibet Border Police troopers have also reportedly been swung into action to trace the aircraft.
According to the Deputy Commissioner, the missing AN-32 aircraft was last seen at Shi Yomi District near Tato Manigong. While there is no information of a crash till now, the District SP has been rushed to conduct a search in areas where there is no mobile connectivity.
Meanwhile, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh is also keeping a close watch on the situation. Rajnath who was in Siachen today spoke to Vice Chief Of Air Force, Air Marshal Rakesh Singh Bhadoria to get an update on the missing AN-32 aircraft.
Spoke to Vice Chief of @IAF_MCC, Air Marshal Rakesh Singh Bhadauria regarding the missing IAF AN-32 Aircraft which is overdue for some hours.
He has apprised me of the steps taken by the IAF to find the missing aircraft. I pray for the safety of all passengers on board.
— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) June 3, 2019