June 28th, 2015
On June 8, A Dornier aircraft went missing while flying over the Bay of Bengal. The aircraft took off from Chennai on a regular sortie to monitor the Tamil Nadu coast and the Palk Bay but did not return to the base and has been missing since then. It was last tracked 16 km off the coast of Chidambaram, about 200 km south of Chennai, by the airport radar in Tiruchirapalli.
The aircraft was carrying three crew members – pilot Dy Commandant Vidya Sagar, co-pilot Dy Commandant MK Soni and navigator Subash Suresh.
Extensive search operations involving ships, helicopters and submarine besides other underwater search equipment have been undertaken since then, with a number of agencies including the Navy, Coast Guard and Coastal Security Group of Tamil Nadu police involved in them.
Still unable to trace the ill-fated aircraft, Coast Guard had yesterday announced its decision to deploy Reliance Industries’ vessel, which has the capability of using high resolution cameras with ROV (Remotely Operating Vehicle).
In March, a Dornier aircraft of the Navy crashed into the sea off the coast of Goa, killing two officers. This had been the first loss of a Dornier for the Indian forces, since they were inducted into service in the 1990s.
Infographic: Economic Times
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