NEW DELHI (Sputnik) — The Russia-made fighter jet, with two pilots on board, took off around 9.30 am (Indian Standard Time) from Salonibari in the north-eastern state and lost contact around 11.30; sources said. It is said the jet lost radar contact when the aircraft was nearly 60 kilometers away from Tezpur air base. Tezpur airbase is located 172 kilometers from the China border.
The aircraft was on a routine training mission when it first lost all radio and radar contact, and then went missing. Search and rescue are being underway in the area which is dense, according to IAF sources.
Earlier in March this year, a Sukhoi aircraft had crashed in the field of Shivkar Kudla village in Rajasthan's Barmer while on a routine sortie. Barmer is in the region bordering Pakistan. The March accident was the sixth accident of SU-30MKI since its induction into the IAF in 2002.
The SU-30MKI is twin-seater twin-engine multirole fighter of Russian origin, which is capable of carrying a variety of medium-range guided air-to-air missiles with active or semi-active radar or infrared homing close range missiles. IAF has contracted 272 Su-30 MKI fighter aircraft in 2000, of which more than 213 Su-30 MKI has been delivered till date and the balance are due to be delivered by 2020.