An Indian Air Force (IAF) MI-17 helicopter crashed at Bomdir near Tawang in Arunachal Pradesh on Friday, killing all 12 defence personnel on board. The victims included an Army official of the rank of lieutenant colonel and 11 IAF personnel, including two pilots.

IAF spokesperson Wing Commander Ranjib Sahoo, based in the Eastern Air Command headquarters in Shillong, told The Hindu that all the bodies have been retrieved from the crash site, about 10 km from Tawang.

A court of inquiry has been ordered.

Defence sources said the chopper, bound for Guwahati, crashed minutes after it took off from the helipad of the Army Brigade Headquarters in Tawang at 12.04 p.m. It was on an air maintenance sortie.