Army helicopter crashes into river, pilot killed (Lead)

November 26th, 2008 - 7:22 pm ICT by IANS  

Lucknow, Nov 26 (IANS) An Indian Army helicopter crashed in Ramganga river in Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly district Wednesay, killing the pilot and seriously injuring the co-pilot, the police here said.”The army’s Cheetah helicopter crashed in Ramganga river in Bareilly’s Oonchagaon village,” Javeed Ahmad, inspector general of police of Bareilly zone, told IANS by telephone.

Lieutenant S. Bhatia was killed while Major K.D. Singh was injured and is undergoing treatment at the military hospital in Bareilly, Ahmad added.

Reasons for the mishap are being investigated by a joint team of the army and the police, he said.

Initial reports said the helicopter belongesd to the air force but later it was found to belong to the Army Aviation Corps.

“The mishap took place today (Wednesday) at around 12.30 p.m. in Oonchagaon village in Bareilly,” district police chief Vinod Kumar Singh said.

According to the police, minutes before the accident, the chopper moved jerkily in the air and fell into the Ramganga river.

“There were only two people, a pilot accompanied by a co-pilot, inside the chopper,” said Singh.

Bareilly is about 300 km from Lucknow.

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