Indian Air Force helicopter crash

On December 8, 2021, Indian Air Force Helicopter Mi-17V5 crashed in the Nilgiris, near Coonoor city. This helicopter crash is another addition to the list of accidents involving VVIPs.

Highlights

  • The helicopter crash has killed Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat, his wife along with 11 members of his personal staff. Reasons for the crash are not yet known.
  • In similar accident on September 2, 2009, helicopter carrying Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister, Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy, crashed into the hills near Kurnool. Then, the pilot was pressured to go ahead even when weather was bad.
  • On September 30, 2001, former Civil Aviation minister Madhavrao Scindia, insisted to proceed to Kanpur in bad weather for a meeting. Aircraft crashed and all died.

What does Coonoor crash indicate?

Crash near Coonoor indicates that, Mi-17V5 was flying low, possibly to keep terrain in sight. It then struck trees and crashed.

Who was General Bipin Rawat?

He was an Indian military officer and a four-star general of the Indian Army. He was appointed as the first Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) of the Indian Armed Forces and he served as CDS from January 2020 until his death in December 2021. Before CDS, he served as 57th and last Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee and 26th Chief of Army Staff of the Indian Army.

About his Military Career

Bipin Rawat was commissioned into 5th battalion of 11 Gorkha Rifles in 1978. He had much experience in high-altitude warfare. He spent ten years conducting counter-insurgency operations. He commanded a company in Uri, Jammu & Kashmir, as a major. He also commanded the 5th battalion 11 Gorkha Rifles as a colonel, along the Line of Actual Control at Kibithu. In 2016, he was appointed as the 27th Chief of the Army Staff.

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