- A military helicopter carrying Indian defence chief General Bipin Rawat crashed near the town of Coonoor in southern India
- Rawat was appointed as India's first Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government in late 2019
- The Air Force said that Rawat, who had previously served as India's Chief of Army Staff, was traveling in an Mi-17V5 helicopter
India’s defence chief, General Bipin Rawat is involved in a helocopter crash in the southern state of Tamil Nadu, Aljazeera reports.
“An IAF Mi-17V5 helicopter, with CDS Gen Bipin Rawat on board, met with an accident today near Coonoor, Tamil Nadu,” the Indian Air Force said.
The 63-year-old chief of defence staff who is India's first chief of defence staff was travelling in a Russian-made Mi-17V5 chopper when the incident happened.
The Indian government established the position in 2019.
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Rawat and his wife were on board along with other officers and were headed to the Defence Services Staff College.
The chopper reportedly took off from Sulur Air Force Station.
Rawat who comes from a military family with several generations having served in the Indian armed forces is credited with reducing insurgency on India's northeastern frontier and supervised a cross-border counter-insurgency operation into neighbouring Myanmar.
Rawat's status is currently unknown.
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