Jaguar crashes in Sikkim, pilot rescued

A Jaguar fighter aircraft of the Air Force crashed in an inaccessible forested area in north Sikkim Friday. The pilot suffered serious injuries.

The jet, on a routine sortie from the Hashimara airbase near Siliguri in West Bengal, crashed near Lik in Upper Dzongu at 1.15 pm with the pilot, Flight Lieutenant Yogesh Yadav, suffering serious injuries and the wreckage catching fire, said Col Gurung of 27 Mountain Division in north Sikkim. Eyewitnesses said there was a loud bang before the pilot bailed out.

Local people reached the crash site at around 3 pm and took the injured pilot to a school at Lik, Col Gurung said.

Since the area did not have roads, two helicopters were sent from the Hashimara airbase to land at the school grounds to evacuate the injured pilot, but they could not do so, he said.

The pilot was then taken from the school on foot by rescuers comprising the local people, police and Army personnel to Passinggang on the North Sikkim Highway, Col Gurung said.

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