One pilot was killed while two others ejected safely as two military aircraft of the Surya Kiran Aerobatics Team (SKAT) met with a head-on collision in Bengaluru on Tuesday. The incident was reported during a sortie as part of the preparations for the Bengaluru Aero India 2019 air show that begins on February 20.
"There were three pilots, one has died, two are safe with injuries," DGP Fire Services M N Reddi who rushed to the spot said.
Wing commander Sahil Gandhi sustained fatal injuries while Wg Cdr VT Shelke and Squadron Leader TJ Singh ejected safely, a defence ministry release said. A court of inquiry has been ordered to ascertain the cause.
"Today morning around 1150 hrs, two Hawk aircraft of Surya Kiran Aerobatic Team crashed close to Yelahanka Air Force base. These aircraft were carrying out practice for the forthcoming Aero India 2019 air show. Out of the three aircrew of the aircraft, Wg Cdr VT Shelke and Sqn Ldr TJ Singh ejected. However, Wg Cdr Sahil Gandhi sustained fatal injuries. The two aircrew have been airlifted to Air Force Command Hospital, Bengaluru. A Court of Inquiry has been ordered to investigate the accident," the official statement read.
Surya Kiran Aerobatic Team was formed in 1996 and is part of the 52nd squadron of the Indian Air Force. The team specialises in aerobatics formation.
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