IAF Mirage combat jet crashes, pilots safely bail out (Second Lead)March 5th, 2012 - 6:02 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, March 5 (IANS) A Mirage-2000 combat jet of the Indian Air Force (IAF) crashed in Rajasthan Monday but the two pilots safely bailed out, an officer said.
The trainer version of aircraft had taken off from the Gwalior air base in Madhya Pradesh on a routine sortie. It crashed near Sawai Madhopur, about 60 km southeast of Rajasthan capital Jaipur, the officer said.
“The crash was reported at 12.30 p.m. No casualties have been reported on the ground and rescue teams have rushed to the crash spot for the two pilots. Further details on the pilot’s condition will be known after the team reaches them,” the officer said.
“The pilots, Squadron Leader Raj and Flight Lieutenant Kanav, who got airborne from Gwalior, ejected safely. There is no reported damage to civil property or life. A court of inquiry has been ordered to investigate the cause of the accident,” defence ministry spokesperson said in a statement.
This is the second Mirage-2000 crash in 10 days. Another twin-seater Mirage-2000 jet had crashed in Madhya Pradesh Feb 24, but in this case too, both pilots, one of whom a three-star officer, had ejected in time.
In July last year, India had signed a $2.4-billion contract for upgrading the 51 Mirage-2000s in in the IAF fleet. The first two planes are already in France while the remaining planes will be upgraded by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited.
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Tags: casualties, combat jet, crash, defence ministry, fleet, flight lieutenant, hindustan aeronautics limited, iaf, India, indian air force, jet crashes, mirage 2000, New Delhi, pilot, raj, rajasthan, spokesperson, squadron leader, three star, two planes