One pilot succumbed to his injuries on Tuesday after two Hawk aircraft crashed close to the Yelahanka airbase in Bengaluru during a rehearsal for the Aero India show. Two other pilots ejected safely, while one civilian was injured in the crash. The aircraft, which were used by the Surya Kiran stunt team, collided before crashing.
DGP Fire Services M N Reddi was quoted as saying by news agency PTI: “There were three pilots, one has died, two are safe with injuries.”
The deceased pilot was identified as Sahil Gandhi. The two injured pilots, Vijay Shelke and Tejeshwar Singh, are being treated for multiple fractures at Command Hospital.
In an initial statement, the IAF said: “Today morning around 1150h two Hawk aircraft of Surya kiran Aerobatic Display Team crashed close to Yelahanka Air Force Base.”
According to PTI, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said, “I’m aware of it (incident),” without elaborating on the incident. She is in Bengaluru ahead of the Aero India show, which is scheduled to begin Wednesday.