Captain Bhavye Suneja, an Indian boy from Delhi’s Mayur Vihar was one of two pilots sitting in the cockpit of the ill-fated Indonesian Lion Air flight which crashed into the Java Sea with 188 passengers and crew member on board on Monday.
The Lion Air flight JT-610 crashed into the sea just minutes after taking off from Indonesia’s capital.
The captain of Lion Air aircraft, Suneja send distress calls and had requested to return to base shortly before losing contact, Yohanes Sirait, a spokesman for the country’s air navigation authorities said.
Suneja got his pilot licence from Bel Air International in 2009.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Suneja has been working with Lion Air since March 2011. He also served as a trainee pilot for four months in the Emirates.
According to a Lion Air statement, Suneja had more than 6,000 flying hours, while the co-pilot had amassed more than 5,000 hours of flying time.
Search and Rescue Agency spokesman Yusuf Latif said authorities were still searching for the remains of the plane, which lost contact with air traffic control around 6:30 am (5 am IST), en route to Pangkal Pinang on the island of Bangka. There has been no information on casualties as of now.
Indonesia’s disaster agency posted photos online of a crushed smartphone, books, bags and parts of the aircraft fuselage that had been collected by search and rescue vessels that have converged on the area.
The crash is the worst airline disaster in Indonesia since an AirAsia flight plunged into the sea in December 2014, killing all 162 on board.
Lion Air is one of Indonesia’s youngest and biggest airlines, flying to dozens of domestic and international destinations.