NEW DELHI (Web Desk): An Indian Air Force’s MiG-21 crashed in Rajasthan on Friday, Indian media reports said.
The plane, a MiG-21 ‘Bison’, crashed after it reportedly hit a bird. The pilot ejected and is reportedly safe.
The jet went down in Bikaner’s Shoba Sar ki Dhani area in the Indian state of Rajasthan. Investigation into the incident is under way, media reports said.
The Indian Air Force said in a statement that the MiG-21 had taken off from the Indian Air Force’s Nal airbase in Rajasthan and that it was on a routine mission.
The crash comes amid heightened tensions between India and Pakistan, after over 40 Indian troops were killed on February 14 in Pulwama.
India piled the blame for Pulwama bombing on Pakistan without presenting any proof. The allegations were strongly refuted by Pakistan.
In response, India said it carried out on February 26 air strikes on what it called a militant training camp at Balakot inside Pakistan.
The Indian government was quick to take credit for a “successful” airstrike and put the death toll to over 300. Pakistani officials, as well as the locals, rejected the claims, inviting local and international media to visit the site of the so-called attack where around a dozen trees were the only “casualty”.
The Pakistan Air Force, in retaliatory action, downed two Indian aircraft the next day, capturing Indian Wing Commander Abhinandan who was then released as a peace gesture by Pakistan.