IAF plane with 29 aboard missing, search launched

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Chennai/New Delhi, July 22 (IANS) An AN-32 aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF) with 29 people on board went missing over the Bay of Bengal on Friday, Defence Ministry sources said.

The aircraft was flying from Chennai to Port Blair. Those on board included six crew members.

“The aircraft departed at 8.30 a.m. and was due at Port Blair at 11.30 a.m. The aircraft has not reached. Search operations are on,” a senior IAF official told IANS over telephone from New Delhi.

“We have deployed Coast Guard aircraft and ships to search for the plane,” a Coast Guard Official told IANS.

Officials said it was a “courier flight” with service personnel on board.

A major search and rescue operation has been launched by the Indian Navy in the Bay of Bengal.

Navy officials said a P-8I surveillance aircraft, a Dornier and four ships had been deployed in the search and rescue operation.

–IANS

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