An Indian Army helicopter crashed into the Ranjit Sagar Dam lake in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kathua district on Tuesday.
The Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) belonged to Army Aviation and was a Weapon System Integrated helicopter.
According to locals, the chopper used to hover over the dam and drop a pipe into the water every day. However, it crashed the moment it dropped the pipe on Tuesday morning.
Indian Army Helicopter #crash into Ranjit Sagar Dam near Pathankot.
NDRF Team deployed to carryout search & rescue pic.twitter.com/XyT6fuhUy4
— Dogra Hun (@DograHun) August 3, 2021
Indian rescue teams immediately rushed to the scene. As per reports, there are no casualties. Both pilot and co-pilot were safe, however, authorities are unsure of the number of people on board.
“There is no information about the number of people who were on board this chopper,” said RC Kotwal, SSP, Kathua district.
Rescue teams recovered some of the floating material of the chopper.
J&K | Indian Army helicopter crashed into Ranjit Sagar Dam, Kathua, today
Some of the floating material of the chopper recovered. Specialized forces & divers are conducting rescue operations. Only after divers go into the lake will we know what exactly happened: SSP Kathua pic.twitter.com/EU1jhtOyqv
— ANI (@ANI) August 3, 2021
The reason for the crash is still not confirmed. However, there are speculations that it may be due to a technical failure.
Twitteratis had a unique reaction to the incident. Among messages of prayers, there were some who thought Freedom fighters attacked the chopper.
Another Twitterati mocked the incident by saying this is why countries return Indian-made helicopters.
Operation Kashmir Freedom has started
— Muhammad Usama (@Muhamma70195684) August 3, 2021
In 2018, Maldives asked India to take back one of two naval helicopters New Delhi had gifted to it. Maldives wanted a Dornier maritime surveillance aircraft instead of the Dhruv Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH) which India gifted to the Maldives.
More instances of Indian Army helicopter crashes
Earlier this year, in January, one pilot died after an Indian Army helicopter crashed in Kathua district’s Lakhanpur near the Jammu and Kashmir-Punjab border. The HAL Dhruv helicopter crashed after developing a technical issue.
Last year in February, an Army chopper crashed near Jammu and Kashmir’s Reasi district. The two pilots of the helicopter survived the crash.
The Chetak chopper was on its routine flight when it developed a technical failure. The pilots then crash-landed the chopper.
In October 2019, another helicopter of the Indian Army developed a technical glitch. The helicopter, carrying then Northern Command Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh and other officers, made an emergency landing in Poonch.
The Northern Army Commander was returning from a forward location in the 16 Corps area of operations near the Line of Control (LoC) when the incident took place.