Northern Army Commander Lt Gen Upendra Dwivedi paid rich tributes to aviation technician who succumbed to his injuries on Thursday after the “hard landing” crash of the Army helicopter in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kishtwar district. An Army Aviation ALH Dhruv helicopter on an operational mission crashed while making a ‘precautionary landing’ on the banks of Marua River in Jammu and Kashmir’s Kishtwar, officials said on Thursday.

As per the statement, there were two pilots and a technician on board. The condition of two injured pilots was reported to be stable. “#LtGenUpendraDwivedi, #ArmyCdrNC & All Ranks #Northern Command offer tribute to supreme sacrifice of CFN (Avn Tech) Pabballa Anil, in the line of duty during Operational flying of ALH MK III near #Kishtwar #JammuKashmir & offer deepest condolences to the bereaved family,” the official Twitter account of Northern Command of the Indian Army posted.

The pilots had reported a technical fault to the Air Traffic Controller (ATC) and proceeded for a ‘precautionary landing’ at about 11.15 hours on May 4. “Due to the undulating ground, undergrowth and unprepared landing area, the helicopter apparently made a hard landing”, the Army statement read. The deceased aviation technician along with two pilots was rushed to the command hospital in Udhampur but succumbed to injuries. According to officials, the Army ALH Dhruv Helicopter crashed near Machhna village in the Marwah area of Jammu and Kashmir’s Kishtwar at around 11:45 AM.

Following the crash, immediate rescue operations were launched by Army rescue teams who reached the site. “Two pilots and a technician were on board. All three injured personnel have been evacuated to Command Hospital, Udhampur,” according to the statement. A court of inquiry has been ordered into the incident to ascertain the cause of the crash.