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Air Platforms

India loses Su-30, Chetak on same day

16 March 2017

An Indian Air Force (IAF) Sukhoi Su-30MKI ('Flanker-H') fighter crashed in India's western Rajasthan state during a routine training flight on 15 March, injuring three people on the ground.

The IAF said both crewmembers ejected safely from the twin-engined fighter, which had taken off from Uttarlai airbase, near the Pakistan border. An inquiry has been ordered into the accident.

Senior IAF officers said the force's 240-strong Su-30MKI fleet, constituting the backbone of its fighter inventory, was being grounded for 'precautionary' checks before being cleared to resume flying.

The IAF has lost seven Su-30MKIs since 2009 and in May 2016 former defence minister Manohar Parrikar told parliament that the Su-30MKI fleet had suffered 34 mid-air engine failures over the past two years, forcing the aircraft affected to land on just one engine.

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