Naval Mig-29K engine fire, pilots safe

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The aircraft that crashed was a trainer version of the fighter jet.

The debris of the MiG-29K fighter jet that crashed shortly after it took off on a training mission from INS HANSA at Dabolim in Goa, Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019

The aircraft was on a routine mission when it suffered an engine fire, according to Navy spokesperson

An Indian Navy Mig-29k fighter jet on a routine mission crashed after engine failure due to bird hit in Goa on Saturday morning. The two pilots ejected safely.

At about noon on Saturday, a MiG-29K twin seater aircraft, on a routine training sortie, encountered a flock of birds after take off from the naval air base at Dabolim in Goa, the Navy said in a statement.

“The pilot observed that the left engine had flamed out and the right engine had caught fire. Attempts to recover the aircraft following the standard operating procedures were unsuccessful due to nature  of emergency,” the statement said.

The pilot, showing huge presence of mind, pointed the aircraft away from populated areas and both pilots ejected safely, it added. The pilots Capt. M. Sheokhand and Lt. Cdr. Deepak Yadav are safe and have been recovered, the Navy stated, adding that there has been no loss of life or damage to property on ground.  

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh spoke to the two pilots after the incident. “It is a matter of great satisfaction that they managed to eject in time and both of them are safe. I pray for their good health and well-being,” he said in a tweet. A Court of Inquiry (CoI) has been instituted to investigate the cause of accident. 

India had procured 45 Mig-29K carrier based fighters from Russia. They currently operate from Navy’s sole aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya and in future will fly from the first Indigenous Aircraft Carrier (IAC) Vikrant once it enters service.

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