Search on for missing Navy personnel

Panaji: The search is still on for two Indian Navy personnel who went missing after the crash of a Dornier-228 maritime surveillance aircraft, an officer said on Thursday.

Navy sources said one of the vessels in the search and rescue operation has detected a large metallic object suspected to be the fuselage of the ill-fated aircraft.

However, the missing personnel have so far not been traced, the officer said.

“INS Makar, a naval hydrographic vessel has detected a large metallic object, using her side scan sonar…it is likely to be the fuselage of the ill-fated Navy Dornier,” the officer added.

“Depth in the area is 50-60 metres. INS Matanga with naval divers have embarked for the area and diving operations are to commence shortly,” the officer said.

The Dornier-228 aircraft with three personnel on board crashed into the Arabian Sea off the coast of Goa on Tuesday night.

One survivor, Commander Nikhil Kuldip Joshi, was picked up by a passing fishing boat from a fishing hamlet off Karwar and transferred to a naval fast interceptor craft.

The Indian Navy chief, Admiral Robin Dhowan, had rushed to Goa from New Delhi on Wednesday morning and met the families of the aircrew, and Commander Joshi.