Itanagar: Five mutilated bodies and the wreckage of the helicopter carrying Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Dorjee Khandu were found on Wednesday near the Jang waterfalls in Tawang district, exactly 96 hours after they went missing, officials said.
Search teams spotted the wreckage and the bodies in remote and inaccessible Lobotang area around 10 a.m. at an altitude of 10,000 ft. The area is surrounded by steep mountain ranges and is thickly forested.
The bodies are likely to be lifted to the first accessible point and then brought to Itanagar later in the day, officials said. Rescue teams could take three to four hours to bring the bodies to the first accessible point on foot.
The rugged and difficult terrain with rains and heavy snow is affecting the progress of the rescue workers.
The Pawan Hans AS350 B-3 helicopter had taken off from Tawang at 9.50 a.m. Saturday. The last radio contact with the ground was about 20 minutes after take off as it flew over the Sela Pass along the Chinese border perched at an altitude of 13,700 feet.
Six Indian Air Force helicopters Wednesday morning began an aerial survey along the dizzy heights of Sela Pass for the rescue and search mission.
Congress legislator Tsewang Dhondup’s younger sister, Yeshmi Lamu, was the lone woman occupant in the helicopter. She was in the helicopter with the chief minister for a medical check-up in Itanagar.
The helicopter had two pilots and three passengers on board, including the chief minister and his personal security officer. Yeshmi Lamu was the third passenger.
The Arunachal Pradesh government had announced a cash reward of Rs.1 million to anyone who could provide information about the missing helicopter.