UPDATE: 8:00 a.m. EDT — The 29 people on board the missing Indian Air Force AN-32 aircraft included six crew members (including three officers), 11 other IAF personnel, two Army personnel, one coast guard sailor, one Navy sailor and eight naval civilians.
UPDATE: 7:44 a.m. EDT — The Indian Air Force plane, which went missing over the Bay of Bengal Friday, was observed to have taken a left turn with "rapid loss of height from 23,000 feet," according to a document shared with International Business Times by an anonymous source.
According to local TV news network NDTV, the last call from the aircraft was 16 minutes after take-off, when the pilot reported that "everything is normal."
The Indian Navy, which is participating in the search for the plane, has sent a submarine to track any underwater transmission from the plane’s emergency beacon locator, which usually gets activated if there is a crash.
An Indian Air Force plane, traveling from the southern Indian city of Chennai to the capital city of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, went missing early Friday. According to local reports, 29 people were on board the Antonov AN-32 plane.
The plane reportedly took off from Tambaram, a suburb in Chennai in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu, at 8:30 a.m. local time (10:30 p.m. EDT Thursday). The aircraft, which was en route to the capital of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands — a union territory of India situated in the Bay of Bengal — was reportedly on courier duty.
Authorities said that the plane, with six crew members on board, was scheduled to land in Port Blair at 11:30 a.m. (1:30 a.m. EDT), local news network NDTV reported.
A massive search operation is reportedly being conducted by the Indian Air Force, the Indian Navy, and the coast guard.
The Indian Air force has more than 100 AN-32s in service, and the aircraft can fly for up to four hours without refueling.
This is a developing story.