Shimla : Intensive combing operations continued Tuesday in Himachal Pradesh’s Lahaul Valley to locate the wreckage of an Indian Air Force (IAF) MiG-29 combat jet that crashed a week ago. The pilot’s fate is still not known.
“Both ground and aerial recces were conducted by the IAF and the Indian Army as the sky remained cleared throughout the day,” Lahaul and Spiti district’s Deputy Commissioner of Police Rajeev Shankar said.
A statement issued by Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal Tuesday directed the district administration to intensify the search for the plane’s pilot, Squadron Leader B.S. Tomar.
Tomar’s family has already reached Lahaul Valley from Indore in Madhya Pradesh.
The family has announced a reward of Rs.50,000 to anyone who provides conclusive clues about him.
The IAF has identified the hills above Chokhang village, located on the Keylong-Udaipur highway and 40 km from district headquarters Keylong, where the jet crashed.
The pilot, who had taken off from Adampur near Jalandhar in Punjab Oct 19, was on night flying training mission.
Some locals have spotted burnt pieces of the aircraft in the hills of Thirot but the search parties haven’t been able to reach the site due to hostile weather.
The entire mountain range in the valley is treacherous and the rock cliffs are quite steep and the gorges narrow.