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Big Mistake: Shooting down own chopper

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The helicopter crashed in Budgam around 10 am on February 27 when Indian and Pakistani fighter jets were engaged in fierce aerial combat in Nowshera, a day after India’s air strike on a Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist training camp in Balakot in Pakistan.
It  found violations of standard operating procedures. The IFF helps air defence radars to identify whether an aircraft or helicopter is friendly or hostile.


The helicopter went down around 10 minutes after taking off.

Official sources said the helicopter was asked to return because of the dogfight 100 km away from Srinagar.

A missile was fired at the helicopter as the IAF ground staff thought it was an enemy chopper.

The IAF headquarters had ordered a CoI into the incident under an Air Commodore-ranked officer.

Administrative action has already been taken against four officers held responsible for the helicopter crash by the CoI.

Air Chief Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria said “It has been established that the helicopter was hit by our own missile. We have already taken administrative action. Disciplinary action is being taken against two officers. We admit that it was a big mistake and necessary steps have been taken so that such incident does not recur,” .

Separately, disciplinary action like court martial procedures are being initiated against two senior officers, IAF officials said.

A surface-to-air missile of the Indian Air Force brought down the Mi-17 aircraft in Budgam in the Kashmir Valley, killing six IAF personnel on board the chopper and a civilian on the ground.

The court of inquiry ordered into the incident has completed its probe and it has been established that the helicopter was hit by IAF’s own missile.