India loses 35 defence aircraft, 14 pilots to crashes in 3 years

A total of 35 aircraft — including fighter jets — have crashed in India over the last three years, the ministry of defence said.

The 35 aircraft included 11 helicopters belonging to various divisions of the defence forces.

A total of 14 pilots lost their lives in these accidents, the ministry said.

The fighter jets in the Indian Air Force are worth anywhere between Rs 15 cr to Rs 130 cr per piece. In all, the IAF is estimated to have around 1,000 aircraft, including helicopters and transport vehicles.

The government said it is putting in place new regulations to prevent accidents.

“Accident prevention programmes have been given an added thrust to identify risk prone/hazardous areas specific to the aircraft fleets and operational environment to ensure safe practices/procedures,” Ministry of Defence said.

It is also conducting analytical studies and quality audits of the aircraft fleets to identify vulnerable areas to avoid aircraft accidents, it said.