FILE PHOTO: Indian Army Commander-in-Chief Bipin Rawat arrives to attend the Retreat ceremony in New Delhi, India, January 29, 2019. REUTERS/Altaf Hussain
December 9, 2021
By Devjyot Ghoshal
NEW DELHI (Reuters) – The bodies of India’s defense minister and 12 others killed in a helicopter crash were hoisted over an Indian flag at a defense post on Thursday, before being flown in. New Delhi, where the general will be laid to rest with his full military title.
General Bipin Rawat, his wife and 12 defense personnel were on their way to an army officers college in southern India when the air force helicopter they were traveling on crashed near the town of Coonoor on Wednesday. .
Only one of the 14 people on board survived the crash. The cause of the accident is under investigation.
In a brief statement to parliament, Indian Defense Minister Rajnath Singh said the remains of all the deceased would be brought back to New Delhi and Rawat would be cremated with full military honors.
Rawat, 63, was appointed by the government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi as India’s first chief of the general staff of defense at the end of 2019. The position was established with the aim of unifying the army, navy and air force. army.
Singh said the Mi-17 V5 helicopter took off at 11.48am (06:18 GMT) on Wednesday from Sulur Air Base. The base lost contact with the plane seven minutes before it was scheduled to land in a hillside military compound at 12:15 p.m. local time.
“Locals spotted the fire in the forest near Coonoor and ran to where they observed the wreckage of the military helicopter engulfed in flames,” Singh said.
At a colonial-era barracks at Wellington, the military town where Rawat and his entourage headed, uniformed soldiers carefully placed coffins, in the presence of officers from all three branch of the Indian Armed Forces.
Soldiers, veterans, politicians and others then paid their last respects, offering wreaths and flowers by the casket.
At a nearby military hospital, the sole survivor of the crash, an air force captain, was given life support.
“Every effort is being made to save his life,” Singh said.
(Reporting by Devjyot Ghoshal; Editing by Euan Rocha, Robert Birsel and Ana Nicolaci da Costa)
https://www.oann.com/bodies-of-indias-defence-chief-12-others-to-be-brought-to-new-delhi/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=bodies-of-indias-defence-chief-12-others-to-be-brought-to-new-delhi With flowers and greetings, last respects to the Defense Minister of India