Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari has rushed for Sulur Airbase after a military chopper carrying Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat and others crashed near Coonoor in Tamil Nadu on Wednesday afternoon, sources said.
Earlier in the day, the Indian Air Force confirmed that General Rawat was on-board an IAF Mi-17V5 helicopter that met with an accident while going from Sulur to Wellington in Tamil Nadu.
There were 14 people, including nine officials of the CDS, on-board when the helicopter crashed.
The IAF has ordered an inquiry into the accident.
Five people have died in the accident, informed Tamil Nadu forest minister K Ramachandran.
Bodies recovered from the site of the chopper crash were taken to Military Hospital, Wellington in Tamil Nadu.
"Bodies recovered from the site of the crash, between Coimbatore and Sulur where a military chopper crashed, have been taken to Military Hospital, Wellington in Tamil Nadu," sources told ANI.
"An IAF Mi-17V5 helicopter, with CDS Gen Bipin Rawat on board, met with an accident today near Coonoor, Tamil Nadu. An Inquiry has been ordered to ascertain the cause of the accident," tweeted IAF.
Search and rescue operations are underway.
More details are awaited.