A MiG-21 trainer aircraft belonging to the Indian Air Force (IAF) Tactics and Air Combat Development Establishment (TACDE) school crashed near its Gwalior Air Force Base in Madhya Pradesh this morning. The fighter jet, which was on a routine mission, crashed at around 10 am. Both pilots were safely ejected. Safe ejection of the pilots were informed by the village head from the spot.
This is thought to the 12th IAF crash in this year alone. The Air Force has ordered an inquiry into the incident to investigate the cause of the crash. In March, another MiG-21 crashed in Bikaner in Rajasthan. The pilot managed to eject successfully.
According to the Indian Air Force, the MiG-21 is a Soviet-era single-engine multirole fighter/ground attack aircraft that forms the backbone of its fleet. It was first inducted into the IAF in the 1960s, soon after the Indo-China War and upgraded to the MiG-21 Bison version in 2006.