Indian military jets collide in air show rehearsal

Indian military jets collide in air show rehearsal

Indian military jets collide in air show rehearsal

The Hawk trainer jets, which grazed each other before crashing, were on practice sorties a day ahead of the Aero India 2019 opening.

The Aero India official website said a total of 61 aircraft would be on display and 403 exhibitors would be part of the show. Army Chief Gen Bipin Rawat, Air Force Chief B S Dhanoa and Navy Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba were also present. The show is held once every two years and facilitates the Indian aerospace industry as well as other allied service providers to display their products and services to the forte audience.

As the IAF decided not to fly its Surya Kiran jets at the air show after it lost two of its nine aircraft on Tuesday, the visitors missed its daring aerobatics and colourful display.

The deceased pilot, identified as Sahil Gandhi, had been flying solo.

The injured pilots, Shelke and Singh, were taken to the Yelahanka air base and airlifted to the Command Hospital in Bangalore, 23km away.

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A Court of Inquiry will investigate the cause of the accident, the statement said.

A civilian was also injured in the mishap, police told PTI.

Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman Wednesday invited investors to capitalise on the ecosystem in aero space and other sectors in India which offered a big market for Defence manufacturing. "I'm aware of it (incident)", she said, but did not elaborate further.

"Surya Kiran" (ray of the Sun), with its breathtaking manoeuvres and formations, is always a major attraction in Aero India shows. "The risks are very high".

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