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Arunachal: Army’s Cheetah helicopter crashes near Bomdila, search on for 2 pilots

BOMDILA-    An Indian Army Aviation Cheetah helicopter flying an operational sortie near Bomdila, Arunachal Pradesh, crashed Thursday. The helicopter is reported to have lost contact with the ATC at around 9:15 am.

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An Army Aviation Cheetah helicopter flying an operational sortie near Bomdila, Arunachal Pradesh was reported to have lost contact with the ATC at around 09:15 AM on 16 March 23.
It is reported to have crashed near Mandala, West of Bomdila. Search parties have been launched.
More details will be shared soon, said Lt col Mahendra Rawat PRO Defence Guwahati.

Based on the preliminary reports, two pilots were onboard the Cheetah helicopter. Teams of Army, SSB, and police have left for the crash site. Furthermore, the weather in the area is reported to be foggy with low visibility of up to 5 meters.

According to police sources, the villagers had found the crashed chopper ablaze in Dirang, and informed district officials. “Villagers from Bangjalep at Dirang located the chopper around 12.30 pm.

The ageing Chetak and Cheetah helicopters with the IAF and the Army are in dire need of replacement, even as they form the lifeline of the forces in high-altitude areas. There are around 200 Cheetah and Chetak helicopters in service at present.

Last month, Army Chief General Manoj Pande said the Army is looking at inducting around 95 Light Combat Helicopters and 110 Light Utility Helicopters (LUH) in the future as part of enhancing its overall combat aviation profile.

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