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IAF lost 27 aircraft, including 15 fighter jets and choppers, in crashes since 2016: Govt

New Delhi | The Indian Air Force lost 27 aircraft, including 15 fighter jets and helicopters, in crashes since 2016, Minister of State for Defence Shripad Naik said on Wednesday.

The quantum of provisional loss in 11 cases of crashes was approximately Rs 524.64 crore, he said in a written reply in Lok Sabha.

In the 2016-17 fiscal, six IAF fighter jets, two helicopters, one transport aircraft and one trainer crashed. In 2017-18, the air force lost two fighter jets and one trainer aircraft in crashes.

The number rose sharply in 2018-19 with the IAF losing seven fighter jets, two helicopters and two trainers.

This included the crash of the MiG-21 fighter jet which was being piloted by Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman during a dog-fight with Pakistan Air Force planes on February 27. On the same day, an Mi-17 helicopter also crashed killing six air force personnel.

In 2019-20, so far, an AN-32 transport aircraft crashed in Arunachal Pradesh, killing 13 air force personnel earlier this month.

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