Government seeks US Satellite help to locate missing An-32


NEW DELHI: On Friday the Government declared that it has required help from the US for finding of the Air Force’s AN-32 aircraft, which went missing on July 22. On Friday Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar conveyed in Rajya Sabha that, the administration is seeking help from American defence forces to determine whether their satellites had picked up any signal previous to the disappearance of the plane. Minister Parrikar also further conveyed that, at the time of vanishing, the aircraft was on secondary/passive radar and there was no SOS or transmission of any incidence. It just lost so that is the worrying part. The defence minister also further conveyed that, it is total blank. There was not even a single signal proof. That is the cause we are contacting American defence forces to determine whether their satellites picked up any signal.

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In addition our own satelleite imagery, we have inquired the US for their images for the discovery of emergency frequency to space based assets. Foreign nation we have by now asked. I only hope that our efforts succeed,” he conveyed adding that, while replying to queries whether foreign help has been required. The defence minister conveyed that the option of damage in the mysterious disappearance of AN-32 aircraft was “moderately very less”. All types of methods are being used to place the aircraft. As associates expressed anxiety and raised questions over how the plane went missing, he conveyed that, “I can’t speculate because we are penetrating for it and I will not like to speculate. But I can say only this much. The possibility, though we are checking all angles, of any sabotage is moderately very less because they have standard operating events.” While sharing the concern of the associates, he gave details of the process being carried out for the previous one week in annoying to locate the plane, carrying 29 people, which went missing during a flight from Tambaram in Tamil Nadu to Port Blair. Parrikar also has further conveyed that, I value anxiety of members. I am also troubled at the sudden disappearance of the plane. I have spoken to several experts and former air chiefs who were also puzzled by the unexpected disappearance. Queried concerning the age of the aircraft, the Defence Minister conveyedit was “almost as good as new aircraft”.

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He conveyed that, “I don’t know precise age but it is well within lifetime. It has undergone first overhauling. Lot of replacement has been done. They are careful as one of the safest aircraft.” He conveyed that, the mishap rate of Indian Air Force is 0.23 out of 10,000 hours of flying against the worldwide rate of 0.023 and assured the House that maximum efforts would be made to ensure that the mishaps come down. He also further conveyed adding that, if aircraft is not fit for flying we don’t fly it. We have determined to check up whether we can improve the signalling system. About the absent aircraft, Parrikar conveyed that, subsequent to the first overhaul, the plane had already done 279 hours and the pilot was knowledgeable, having put in 500 hours on this route. On Thursday the Defence Minister, who had made declaration on the plane’s disappearance in both Houses of Parliament conveyed, “let us hope that we path it down. I can assure that maximum efforts will be taken.” Sharing details of the hunt operation so far, he conveyed 10 Indian Navy ships as well as submarine ‘Sindhudhwaj’ are carrying searches and “virtually checking up everything”. He also has further conveyed that, 23 inputs had been located, out of which 6 were of the nature of blinks and all inputs have been tartan. If we place something, then we can send deepwater equipment to pick up. We have also diverted ‘Sagar Nidhi’ (vessel) from Mauritius. Parrikar conveyed that, in August it will arrive at one and it can go upto 6,000 metres depth. But we have to locate objects. We have to place it because at this depth you cannot keep on scratching the bottom.