Rajasthan 28 July: Two pilots were killed on Thursday evening when Air Force’s MiG-21 jet crashed during a training sortie in Rajasthan’s Barmer.
“A twin seater Mig-21 trainer aircraft of the IAF was airborne for a training sortie from Utarlai air base in Rajasthan this evening. Around 9:10 pm, the aircraft met with an accident near Barmer. Both pilots sustained fatal injuries,” the Air Force said in a statement.
“IAF deeply regrets the loss of lives and stands firmly with the bereaved families, “it further said.
A court of Inquiry has been ordered to ascertain the cause of the accident, it said.
According to the Air Force, the MiG-21 is a Soviet-era single-engine multirole fighter/ground attack aircraft that forms the backbone of its fleet.
It was first inducted into the IAF in the 1960s, soon after the Indo-China War and upgraded to the MiG-21 Bison version in 2006.
The upgrades included powerful multi-mode radars, better avionics and communication systems. Although these jets could initially only carry “dumb bombs”, they are now capable of transporting a wide range of guided munitions.