On Thursday two Indian Air Force pilots were killed in a plane crash in Assam’s Majuli district south of Kamalabari, a defence spokesperson said.       

“The microlight aircraft crashed soon after it took off from the Jorhat air base on a routine sortie around noon”, officials said.         

There are no details as yet on how the mishap took place. However, it is suspected that the crash took place due to technical reasons.  

“An Indian Air Force Microlight Virus SW-80 crashed around 1200 hrs today, after getting airborne from Air Force Station Jorhat, for a routine sortie,” the defence ministry said in a statement in New Delhi.

A court of inquiry has been ordered to ascertain the cause of the accident, the ministry added.    

Tezpur-based defence spokesperson Lt Col. Harshvardhan Pande told, “The pilots attempted an emergency landing but the aircraft crashed in a sand bar in the northern part of the district and went up in flames. The two pilots killed in the crash were identified as Wing Commander Jai Paul James and Wing Commander D Vats”.    

The crash took place at Darbar Chapori, a sand bar in the Brahmaputra, where there is no human habitation. People from other villages of the district spotted the aircraft going up in flames and informed the district authorities.    

IAF personnel from the 10 Wing Air Force Station in Jorhat have rushed to the spot while police and senior officials of the district have also set out for the crash site which has to be reached by boat.       

A senior IAF official said that more details of the crash can only be obtained after the team reaches the site.