Mirage 2000 we're using is bound to crash: SC

SC trashes PIL for probe into Bengaluru crash
Last Updated 18 February 2019, 08:25 IST

The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a PIL for a probe into Mirage Aircraft crash in Bengaluru on February 1.

"Do you know Mirage 2000 is of which generation? It is bound to crash," a bench of Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi and Justice Sanjiv Khanna asked petitioner-advocate Alakh Alok Srivastava.

On lawyer's failure to answer the specific query, the court said others are using 6th generation Mirage Aircraft while ours is of 3 or 3.5th generation.

"How can we order a judicial inquiry into it," the bench added.

On lawyer's insistence to examine the issue, the bench said, "We are not imposing the cost as the petitioner is advocate."

Within a week of the crash, the lawyer approached the court seeking a direction to set up a monitoring committee of a retired judge and experts to conduct a thorough probe into the unfortunate incident and to suggest measures for avoiding such mishaps in future.

Advocate Srivastava said the petition was filed in the wake of a “sad and unfortunate incident” of the crash of a Mirage Aircraft of Indian Air Force, in which two bright and ace pilots, namely, Squadron Leader Sameer Abrol and Squadron Leader Siddharth Negi lost their lives.

“In view of the alarmingly increase in a number of crashes of various aircrafts and helicopters belonging to the Indian Armed Forces in the recent times, leading to loss of precious lives of a number of air warriors, the petitioner has preferred the instant PIL,” he said.

The issue involved is a sheer violation of fundamental rights of the victims of Indian Air Force jet crash, as enshrined within Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution, amongst others, he contended.

Srivastava sought a direction to fix the accountabilities of the erring government officials and other persons leading to such incidents of aircraft crash of Indian Armed Forces.

He contended appropriate steps must be taken to ensure that such unfortunate incidents do not recur in future.

The petitioner cited news reports stating that the Armed Forces have lost over 35 Aircrafts and Helicopters in crashes, which claimed over 45 lives in 2015-16 alone. “If figures since 2011 are considered, then the IAF, Army and Navy have recorded accidents of over 75 Aircrafts and Helicopters, which have killed over 80 people,” he pointed out.

(Published 18 February 2019, 06:40 IST)

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