New Delhi: Indian Air Force (IAF) today broke the sad news that there are no survivors on board the missing AN-32 aircraft, which had crashed in Arunachal Pradesh.
The IAF said in a tweet, “IAF Pays tribute to the brave Air-warriors who lost their life during the #An32 crash on 03 Jun 2019 and stands by with the families of the victims. May their soul rest in peace.”
The IAF confirmed the fate of the passengers of the AN-32 after eight members of the rescue team reached the crash site today morning. Bad weather had blocked their attempts to reach the site yesterday.
The AN-32 with 13 IAF personnel had gone missing on 3 May after getting airborne from Jorhat. The aircraft was headed towards Mechuka Advanced Landing Ground in Arunachal Pradesh when it lost contact with ground authorities at around 1 pm.
Sources say that blockage of view due to clouds could have been the reason behind the crash of the aircraft. The pictures of the crash site suggest that the aircraft was trying to climb over the mountain top but failed to gain altitude.
The families of the 13 IAF officers who died in the crash have already been informed that there are no survivors.
The crash site was found after eight days of intensive search and rescue operations. Sukhoi-30 MKI aircraft, C-130J Special Operations plane, choppers, UAVs, together with ISRO and NTRO satellites were pressed into service to locate the missing aircraft.
The wreckage was located 16 km North of Lipo at an elevation of 12,000 feet by Mi-17 choppers of the IAF.
The IAF airdropped 8 to 10 personnel near the crash site of the missing aircraft in two helicopter sorties. A team of Army and civil mountaineers were also airlifted close to the location of the crash site.