An MiG-21 fighter jet of the Indian Air Force (IAF) crashed in South Kashmir’s Madhema area Tuesday, shortly after it took off from an Army airport in Srinagar, leading to the death of the pilot. No other casuality has been reported. The IAF has ordered Court of Inquiry into the incident.
The deceased pilot has been identified as Squadron Leader Saurabh Raghuvanshi. Officials said the plane took off from the technical airport of Srinagar but crashed in an open field, 10 km short of Awantipur Airbase in South Kashmir Koil area, around 10.50 am.
A defence spokesman in Srinagar said, “The pilot was on a routine training sortie. A Court of Inquiry has been ordered to investigate the cause,’’ he said.
According to the local residents who witnessed the crash, the aircraft caught fire before crashing. They said the pilot tried to escape by ejecting from the jet but his parachute got entangled in the high-voltage power transmission lines passing through the area.
Soon after the crash, the village was cordoned off by authorities. According to officials, rescue teams retrieved the body of the pilot.