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Mon, 14 Oct 2019

Northeast Today

Air Force An-32 Aircraft Missing for Day 2, ISRO Deploys Satellites for Search ops

Air Force An-32 Aircraft Missing for Day 2, ISRO Deploys Satellites for Search ops
June 04
16:49 2019

NET Bureau

The full might of India’s military and satellite resources have been deployed to trace an Indian Air Force Antonov An-32 transport aircraft that went missing over the Northeast on Monday.

The Indian Air Force An-32 aircraft went missing on Monday afternoon after taking off from Jorhat in Assam with 13 people on board. The aircraft was flying to an advance landing ground in Arunachal Pradesh’s Menchuka Valley near the China border.

The Indian Air Force has deployed Sukhoi Su-30 combat fighter jets, a C-130 Hercules special operations aircraft to locate the aircraft but the An-32 is yet to be traced.

The Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) has also pressed into service its RISAT series of radar imaging satellites to hunt for the missing aircraft.

Cloudy weather over the Northeast has hampered the search for the missing plane.

As search operations continue, here are developments in 10 points.

1. The Indian Air Force aircraft took off from Jorhat at 12.27 pm for the Menchuka advance landing ground in Shi Yomi district in Arunachal Pradesh and made last contact with the ground control at 1 pm.

2. A total of eight crew members and five passengers were onboard the Air Force aircraft.

3. The IAF has deployed C-130J and An-32 aircraft besides two Mi-17 choppers while the Indian Army has pressed into service advance light helicopters to locate the missing Antonov An-32 aircraft. The search operations from air and by ground parties of the Indian Army continued through the night.

4. The district administration of Shi Yomi district in Arunachal Pradesh also launched a search operation along with the villagers.

5. Ground reports were received on the possible location of a crash site on Monday but when helicopters were routed to the location, no wreckage was found.

6. Search operations continued on Tuesday. “Search and rescue [SAR] operation resumes as the weather clears up on Tuesday. Two MI 17s and one ALH already deployed with the ground party of Army and ITBP,” Wing Commander Ratnakar Singh said, adding that more assets may be deployed if required.

7. On the missing An-32, defence minister Rajnath Singh said he had spoken to the vice-chief of the force on steps taken to find the missing aircraft and was praying for the safety of all those on board.

8. On Tuesday, Isro deployed its RISAT series of radar imaging satellites to hunt for the missing An-32 aircraft.

9. IAF officials said the Mechuka Advanced Landing Ground is around 35 km from the China border. The Mechuka ALG, where the aircraft was supposed to land, was re-activated last year. It was non-functional since 2013.

10. The AN-32 is a Russian-origin aircraft and the IAF currently operates a sizeable number of it. It is a twin-engine turboprop transport aircraft.

Source: India Today

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