Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Thousands search missing chopper of CM

Itanagar: The search to find the missing chopper carrying Arunchal Pradesh Chief minister took to new level on Tuesday as three thousand security personnel started searching the inhospitable altitudes of Sela Pass.

Two IAF Mi-17 choppers took off from Tawang thismorning for aerial search but had to return from Sela Pass due to thick haze over the mountains. Four MI-17 choppers have been positioned at Tezpur and are likely to conduct search operation if weather condition improves, Defence spokesman NN Joshi said.

Several local people have also voluntarily joined thesearch as a somber mood descended among the people after the the ISRO satellite report showed metal parts in the area. Official sources said two commando platoons of the Indian Reserve Battalion (IRB), a Deputy Inspector General of Police and Superintendent of Police were deputed to supervise and closely monitor the ground operation yesterday.

Besides Khandu, others on board were pilots Captain JS Babbar, Captain T S Mamik, Khandu`s security officer Yeshi Choddak and Yeshi Lhamu, sister of Tawang MLA Tsewang. Government Spokesperson Jarbom Gamlin said the Army, ITBP and SSB along with police are moving into Naga Jiji of Dirang in Sela Pass, about 85 km from Tawang, from where the helicopter carrying the chief minister took to the air on Saturday last.

He said search teams have reached Chabrela, about 6-7 kms from the area, indicated by ISRO yesterday.Satellite images from its RISAT-2 reportedly traced few metal parts in the area, which may be parts of helicopter.

"In any case it will not be possible before 2 PM today for us to say anything concrete," Gamlin said. The ground search operation is being conducted by 3000 personnel from the Indian Army, ITBP and SSB with assistance from state police, Defence sources said. (With inputs from PTI)

Courtesy:News 24 desk

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