Gen Bipin Rawat’s Funeral Tomorrow, Defence Minister To Brief Parliament

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New Delhi:
Defense Minister Rajnath Singh will today issue a statement in both houses of Parliament on the helicopter crash in Tamil Nadu that killed 13 people, including Chief of Defense Staff General Bipin Rawat and his wife Madhulika Rawat.

Here is a 10-point summary of the helicopter crash:

  1. The helicopter crashed shortly after takeoff from the Sulur air base in Coimbatore at 11.45am. It was on its way to Wellington in the Nilgiri Hills where General Rawat will address a rally at the Defense Services Staff College.

  2. The Mi-17 V5 helicopter was making its landing and would land within 10 minutes if it was just 10 km off the road. The Air Force has now ordered an investigation into what happened.

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  3. The only survivor of the crash is Air Force Group Captain Varun Singh, who is receiving treatment for serious burns. Group Captain Singh flew from Wellington to Sulur to receive General Rawat.

  4. Video from the crash site showed the wreckage scattered along the side of the hill and rescuers struggling to find the bodies through the smoke and fire. Burnt corpses are exhumed from under the metal and fallen trees.

  5. Shortly after the incident, Prime Minister Narendra Modi called a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security at his residence, briefing the defense minister.

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  6. Tributes have been paid to the General from home and abroad. The Prime Minister described him as an “outstanding soldier” and a “true patriot”. The defense minister called it an “irreparable loss” for the country and its forces.

  7. The funeral of General Rawat and his wife will be held tomorrow. Their bodies are expected to arrive in Delhi on a military plane this evening.

  8. General Rawat, 63, took over as India’s first Chief of Defense Staff in January 2020. This position was created to integrate the army, navy and air force A former army chief, he was appointed head of the newly created Military Affairs Department.

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  9. The general joined the army as a second lieutenant in 1978 and served for four decades leading forces in Jammu and Kashmir and along the Line of Actual Control along the Chinese border.

  10. Other defense personnel killed in the accident include Brigadier LS Leader, Lieutenant Colonel Harjinder Singh, Wing Commander PS Chauhan, Squadron Leader K Singh, JWO Das, JWO Pradeep A, Habildar Satpal, Naik Gurs. And Lance Naik Sai Teja.

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