Hunt for Missing Indian Air Force Plane Into Third Day

FILE PHOTO: A soldier stands guard as an Indian Air Force AN-32 transport aircraft carrying security personnel takes-off from the technical airport in Jammu February 9, 2008. REUTERS/Amit Gupta/File Photo
A soldier stands guard as an Indian Air Force AN-32 transport aircraft carrying security personnel takes off from the technical airport in Jammu, in this 2008 file photo. (Reuters/Amit Gupta/File Photo)

(Reuters) – The massive hunt for an Indian Air Force plane that went missing in stormy monsoon weather over the Bay of Bengal on Friday with 29 people on board dragged into a third day on Sunday.

Air Force and Navy officials said the search was continuing but no signs of any wreckage had so far been found.

Local media channels reported that clear skies and improved weather on Sunday could aid ongoing search efforts, which India’s Defense Ministry said on Saturday were hampered by choppy seas and thick monsoon clouds in the search area.

Sixteen ships, a submarine and six aircraft are searching for the plane that disappeared on a routine resupply flight to remote islands in the Bay of Bengal on Friday.

The Russian-made AN-32 was on its way to Port Blair, the capital of India’s Andaman and Nicobar islands, when it vanished from radar.

There were 21 military personnel on board the missing plane, including six crew. The remainder were civilians and some family members of soldiers deployed on the islands.