Indian chief of defence staff Martyred, IAF Tweet Confirms.
Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat died in a helicopter crash today which was on its way from Sulur Air Force base in Tamil Nadu to Wellington where he was to deliver a lecture in Defence Staff college. Gen Rawat along with his wife Madhulika Rawat and other senior officials were onboard the aircraft. Gen Rawat was shifted to nearby hospital where he succumbed to the burn injuries. His wife, too, succumbed to the burns.
Indian Air Force officially confirmed through its Twitter account that General Bipin Rawat died in the accident, along with 11 others.
A total of 14 people were on board the aircraft, and 13 of them perished in the accident. Group Capt Varun Singh SC, Directing Staff at DSSC, is the lone survivor, and he is currently under treatment at Military Hospital, Wellington. He is reportedly being shifted to Bengaluru.
Gen Rawat was accompanied by his wife Madhulika Rawat, Brig LS Lidder, DA to CDS, Lt Col Harjinder Singh, SO to CDS, NK Gursewak Singh POS, NK Jitendra Kumar, PSO, L/NK Vivek Kumar PSO, L/NK B Sai Teja, PSO and Hav Satpal, PSO.
Disturbing visuals emerged from the crashing site where things were up in massive flames. Locals had already launched rescue and relief operations and moved some of the injured to the hospital. Several teams carried out search and rescue operations.
The Indian Air Force has launched an inquiry into the helicopter crash incident.