It was a bad day for Indian Air Force as a Sukhoi-30MKI fighter jet crashed in Rajasthan's Barmer hours after a Chetak helicopter crash landed and toppled in Kaushambi near Allahabad.
The two pilots of the helicopter were safe while both the pilots of the Sukhoi frontline jet ejected before the plane crashed.
IAF sources said the engine of the Chetak helicopter had failed some time after it took off from the Central Air Command headquarters at Bamrauli forcing the pilots to go for a force landing. The chopper crash landed and toppled at a field in Kaushambi around 7:15 AM.
The Sukhoi fighter jet, which was based in Jodhpur IAF base and was on a training sortie, crashed in Barmer district, in the sixth such mishap involving fighter jets in 2016-17. A Mig 21 of IAF had crashed in Barmer in September last year.
Three three villagers were injured in the crash near Shivkar village around 2 PM. Both the pilots ejected safely.
Yesterday, Minister of State for Defence Subhash Bhamre, in a written reply, had informed Rajya Sabha that 22 fighter aircraft of IAF have crashed since 2013-14 and human error and technical defects were the main reasons for the accidents.
Sources said it was the first accident involving the Chetak helicopters in the last five years and that safety record of the fleet has been good.
The injured in the Sukhoi crash were identified as Narayan Ram, his daughter-in-law Dalluram and 14-year old-grandson Hanumanram. Their condition is stated to be stable, according to a police official. Some thatched houses were damaged in the incident.
About the Chetak accident, Defence PRO Group Captain, B B Pande, said, "Shortly after take off, the helicopter developed a technical failure following which the pilots tried to land it in the fields. The land was uneven and the helicopter toppled while landing.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)