An Indian Army Cheetah helicopter crashed in Bhutan in which both the pilots lost their lives on Friday, 27 September, news agency ANI reported, quoting Indian Army sources.
The Indian Army pilot, Rajneesh Parmer who died in the crash was of Lt Col (Lieutenant colonel) rank while the other was a Bhutanese Army pilot training with the Indian Army, according to ANI.
Speaking to ANI after Lt Col Parmar’s father said,
“This is an irreparable loss. It was his birthday yesterday, we had called him in the morning but he was busy, he just said “Thanks Papa, I will speak to you in the evening.”
The incident took place at around 1 pm on Friday, when the helicopter on duty, enroute from Khirmu (Arunanchal Pradesh) to Yongfulla, lost radio and visual contact near Yongphulla in Bhutan, Indian Army Spokesperson Col Aman Anand reportedly said.
Indian Army undertakes training of pilots of Bhutanese armed forces as part of defence and security cooperation between the two countries.
Search and Rescue (SAR) operations were launched immediately from Yongfulla, the spokesperson further said, adding that the wreckage has been located.
The Indian Air Force and the army deployed helicopters from Misamari and Guwahati in Assam and Hashimara in West Bengal to locate the wreckage of the chopper. A high-level inquiry has been ordered, officials said.
The Indian Military Training Team (IMTRAT) has been imparting training to Bhutanese Army personnel.
(With inputs from ANI and PTI)