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ONGC chopper crash: Torso found, DNA analysis underway

PTI | Mumbai |

The search team has recovered a torso, assumed to be that of the missing pilot of the Pawan Hans helicopter that crashed into the sea off the Mumbai coast on Saturday, an official said on Tuesday.

The torso was found last night. But, there would be clarity on it after DNA analysis, the official at the Cooper Municipal General Hospital told PTI.

“We have taken blood samples of a relative of the missing crew member and sent them to a state-run forensic laboratory in Mumbai,” he said.

He said the DNA analysis is a tedious process and its result is expected by Saturday.

The brother of the missing pilot has flown from Kerala to Mumbai and given his blood samples.

The Coast Coast yesterday said another body was recovered by an ONGC vessel.

With this, the remains of six of the seven persons, who were aboard the helicopter, have been recovered, it said.

The ONGC vessel had also managed to retrieve parts of the aircraft, including rotor blades, main gearbox, tail gearbox, both the engines and the emergency locator transmitter (ELT), the Coast Guard earlier said.

A high-level delegation from the Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) and Pawan Hans visited the Coast Guard’s western region headquarters yesterday to assess the situation and formulate the further strategy for an early recovery of the debris and body parts, if any, it said.

The helicopter with seven people on-board, including five officers of the ONGC and two pilots, crashed off the Mumbai coast minutes after it took off for the state-owned company’s oil installation in the Arabian sea on Saturday.