Praying for safety of all 13 persons who were on board on Indian Air Force (IAF) transport aircraft AN-32 that has gone missing on Monday afternoon, Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu has extended all support to the IAF which launched search operation.
Taking to micro-blogging site, Twitter, Mr Khandu said, “Praying for safety of all 13 persons who were on board on Indian Air Force AN-32 plane which took off from Jorhat Station for Mechuka ALG (Advance Landing Ground) at around 1PM and is reportedly missing. Our all support to the IAF that have launched its search operation.”
The IAF transport aircraft AN-32 carrying eight crew members and five other passengers has gone missing after it got airborne from Jorhat airbase in Assam at 1225 hours on Monday.
The aircraft took off for Mechuka Advance Landing Ground in Arunachal Pradesh.
Last communication of the aircraft with the ground agencies was established at 1300 hrs. Thereafter, there has been no contact. Since the aircraft did not reach the airfield, overdue action was initiated, sources in the Air Force said.
All available resources have been employed to locate the aircraft, sources added.
Meanwhile, taking immediate cognizance of the matter, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said in a tweet, “Spoke to Vice Chief 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,”
The An-32 is a Russian-designed twin engine turboprop transport aircraft used extensively by the Indian Air Force for over four decades.