India intensifies search operations for missing Air Force aircraft

Source:Xinhua Published: 2019/6/4 17:53:10

India on Tuesday intensified its search operations for the missing AN-32 aircraft belonging to the Indian Air Force (IAF). According to official sources, the RISAT (Radar Imaging Satellite) has been pressed into service to locate the aircraft, which went missing at around 13:00 hours on Monday after taking off from Jorhat in northeastern state of Assam, with 13 persons onboard.

Besides, Indian Navy's 'P-8I' aircraft, which has long-range maritime reconnaissance facility, has also joined the search operations.

"The 'P-8I' aircraft shall carry out search with Electro Optical and Infra Red (EO & IR) sensors in thickly forested areas," the sources said, adding that it also has a very powerful "Synthetic Aperture Radar" which shall be utilized during the Search And Rescue (SAR) operations to locate the missing plane.

On Monday, an official statement issued by the Ministry of Defence said that the wreckage of the missing "AN-32" aircraft had not been sighted so far.

Search operations from air and by ground parties of the Indian Army continued through the night, though heavy rains and inclement weather hampered the search operations.

"Some ground reports were received on possible location of a crash site. Helicopters were routed to the location, however, no wreckage has been sighted so far. IAF is coordinating with Indian Army as well as various government and civil agencies to locate the missing aircraft," the statement said.