The Indian Navy has located the body of Commander Nishant Singh 11 days after his MiG-29K crashed in the Arabian Sea. The Indian Navy has recovered the mortal remains of Singh 70 metres under water in the Arabian sea, about 50 kilometres off Goa's coast.
Revealing the information, the Indian Navy said on Monday that it "has recovered the body of the missing MiG-29K pilot Commander Nishant Singh on the seabed 70 metres below water. It has been found 30 miles off Goa coast after extensive search. The aircraft crashed on Nov 26 while operating over Arabian Sea."
Commander Singh's trainer aircraft had crashed on November 26 at around 5 pm a while after taking off from Goa. One pilot had been rescued immediately after the crash, while an intensive search was initiated to locate the commander.
The Navy's efforts included deployment of nine warships, fourteen aircrafts, as well as a Fast Interceptor Craft. On November 29, the Navy managed to find some of the aircraft's debris; landing gear, turbo charger, fuel tank engine, and the wing engine cowling.
"A MiG-29K trainer aircraft of Indian Navy operating at sea ditched at about 1700 hrs on November 26, 2020. One pilot has been recovered and search by air and surface units is in progress for the second pilot. An inquiry has been ordered to investigate the incident," the Indian Navy had said in a statement on November 26. The fighter jet was flying back to its base - INS Hansa - from the aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya.
THIRD MiG ACCIDENT IN A YEAR
This accident marks the third accident involving the MiG-29K aircraft since 2019.
A MiG-29K twin-seat fighter aircraft had crashed in South Goa district in November 2019, with both pilots ejecting safely. Next accident too occurred in the Arabian Sea off the Goan coast on February 23 this year. Taking off from INS Hansa, a prominent naval air station at Vasco in Goa, the pilot had managed to eject safely.
The MiG-29K is an all-weather carrier-based multirole fighter aircraft developed by Russian aerospace company Mikoyan (MiG). The Indian Navy had procured a fleet of 45 MiG-29Ks from Russia more than ten years back at a cost of around $2 billion.