Search on for missing India coast guard plane

Updated June 09, 2015

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A routine patrol ended up in disaster as an ICG plane vanished off radar screens Monday night. -Reuters/file
A routine patrol ended up in disaster as an ICG plane vanished off radar screens Monday night. -Reuters/file

NEW DELHI: Indian rescuers were searching Tuesday for a coast guard plane that went missing overnight off the country's southeastern coast, a defence official said.

The aircraft had been on a routine patrol south of the city of Chennai when it disappeared off radar screens at about 9:30pm on Monday, defence spokesman Sitanshu Kar said.

Three crew members were on board the plane, which took off from Chennai at 5:30pm, the Press Trust of India news agency reported quoting aviation sources.

Kar said search and rescue efforts were underway to find the Indian Coast Guard (ICG) plane, which had been on a regular “surveillance sortie over sea" and failed to return to base at 10pm.

“The missing Dornier aircraft was the latest induction in the ICG, in 2014, and was being flown by highly experienced crew,” Kar posted on Twitter.

Navy ships and the coast guard were scouring waters in the area where the plane went missing some 152 kilometres south of Chennai, he also said in a tweet.

Nine navy and coast guard boats along with aircraft were being used in the ongoing search, he said.