Ten people, including two pilots of a chartered aircraft of the Border Security Force (BSF) were killed when the plane crashed near the Delhi airport soon after the takeoff on Tuesday morning.
Initial reports suggest that the Beech Super King Air B-200 developed a technical snag soon after taking off from the Indira Gandhi International Airport’s runway 28 at 9.37 a.m. A pilot of the aircraft asked the Delhi air traffic control (ATC) for a priority landing and full emergency was declared and measures put in place. The ATC asked two other approaching aircraft to be on the stand-by as it allowed the BSF aircraft priority landing.
Sources at the IGI airport said that the aircraft overshot the runway while taking off for Ranchi, which could have caused some damage that forced it to land back. The reports, however, are yet to be confirmed.
The aircraft was on its way back and approaching the airport’s runway 10 from the Dwarka side when it suddenly lost radio contact with the ATC. The plane crashed at the airport’s outer periphery boundary wall on the western side while descending towards the runway at around 9.50 a.m.
“We saw the plane flying really low and could see fire coming out of it too. After the plane crashed, I saw two bodies with deep cuts on their neck and hands,” said Yogesh, a local resident.
Two labourers, a man and a woman, who were working near the crash site were also grievously injured after smouldering parts of the crashed aircraft reportedly fell on them. Both of them were rushed to a nearby hospital by Delhi Police personnel.
At least 15 fire tenders rushed to the spot but as per reports, no one inside the aircraft could be saved. Officials of the Air Safety wing of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation reached the spot to carry out air crash investigations, sources said.
The flight had 10 BSF personnel on board, including Pilots BP Bhatt and Rajesh Shriram, Deputy Commandant D. Kumar, Inspector RP Yadav and SN Sharma, Sub Inspector Ravindra Kumar, Sunder Singh and Chotte Lal, Assistant Sub Inspector DP Chouhan and Constable K Rawat.
The aircraft with registration number VT-BSA had a turbine multi-engine and weighed 5,669 kg. It was manufactured in 1994 and registered on August 3, 1995 by the BSF as a passenger aircraft. It had a seating capacity of 10, apart from two crew members. The aircraft was based at IGI airport’s technical area with the BSF’s Air Wing and was used to transport its personnel.
According to sources, the aircraft was only recently repainted and serviced by the BSF.
Rajnath visits crash site
Home Minister Rajnath Singh visited the crash site in Dwarka area.
Mr. Singh tweeted, "My heart goes out to the families of those who died in the BSF plane crash today. The incident is extremely painful and shocking."
The BSF said they were inquiring into the incident.
(With inputs from Vijaita Singh)