The Indian Air Force reported on Wednesday that a helicopter carrying the chief of the Indian Army, General Bipin Rawat, crashed in the south of the country, without specifying whether the accident left fatalities.
“An Indian Air Force Mi-17V5 helicopter, with the Chief of the Army Bipin Rawat aboard, had an accident today near Coonoor, in Tamil nadu“, has indicated the communication department of the Indian Air Force on Twitter.
Meanwhile, the Indian state news agency has reported that the accident has injured at least three people who have already been taken to hospital.
Rawat is the highest ranking military man in the Indian Army and also acts as Defense Counsel of the Government of India.
According to local media, 14 people were traveling in the helicopter, including Rawat’s wife. The aircraft was transporting several senior officials from the Ministry of Defense when it suffered an accident in the Nilgiris district.
Some media speak of 4 dead
According to said media, at least four people would have died on the spot, although on board the helicopter there were more than a dozen. The helicopter was covering the distance between the Sulur air base and the city of Wellington, in Tamil Nadu. At the moment, three high-ranking officials have been rescued alive, although search work is being carried out in the area of impact, according to information from the newspaper. ‘The Hindustan Times’.
The injured are being transferred to a local hospital as the local population participates in search and rescue efforts. The Indian Air Force, for its part, has confirmed the accident and Rawat’s presence on board the aircraft, but has not provided further details on the status of the passengers.
However, the Army has announced that an investigation has been opened to determine the causes of the accident.