A 9 NAET twin-engine aircraft of the Tara Air with 22 people onboard has lost contact with airport authorities, said officials on Sunday. The plane, which took off at 9.55 am and went off the radar shortly thereafter, was flying from Pokhara to Jomsom in Nepal.
Out of the 22 people, four passengers were Indian nationals while three were from Japan. Rest of the 15 people, including the crew members, were Nepali citizens, according to the state media.
A search and rescue operation has been launched and officials have deployed two helicopters from Mustang and Pokhara to locate the plane.
“The aircraft was seen over the sky of Jomsom in Mustang district and then had diverted to Mt. Dhaulagiri after which it hadn’t come into contact,” Chief District Officer Netra Prasad Sharma said while speaking to news agency ANI.
This incident has brought back the memories of the plane crash in China’s Guangxi region in March this year. The plane, which belonged to the China Eastern Airlines, was flying from Kunming to Guangzhou with 132 people onboard.
However, it crashed near the Wuzhou city, claiming all 132 lives, after which Chinese President Xi Jinping ordered a probe. Later, black box data was recovered which suggested that someone in the cockpit intentionally crashed the plane, according to a report by The Wall Street Journal.