Bengaluru, June 10: The Indian Coast Guard has launched a massive search operation to locate the missing Dornier aircraft CG-791.
The Dornier which was on a routine maritime surveillance off the Tamil Nadu coast, has failed to return to the base on June 8.
The Coast Guard officials said on Wednesday that a mammoth search operation has been launched.
The Coast Guard has also issued an advisory to fishermen, merchant ships and Coastal Security Group of the Tamil Nadu police to report any sighting of the missing aircraft.
As part of the intense operations, around 15 highly-specialised Coast Guard and Naval ships and several other patrol boats of Coastal Security Group are involved in the search.
Among the missing crew members are Deputy Commandant Vidyasagar (pilot), Deputy Commandant M K Soni (co-pilot) and navigator-cum-observer Subash Suresh.
As reported by OneIndia on June 9, the long range maritime reconnaissance aircraft P8I has so far under taken over 40 hours of flight to locate the missing plane and the crew.
"The missing aircraft has not been sighted so far," the Coast Guard confirmed on Wednesday afternoon.
The officials said that in order to augment the search operations, two naval ships capable of underwater detection have been pressed into service.
The search area has been expanded up to 70 nautical miles into the sea extending from Mahabalipuram to Karikal on the Tamil Nadu coast.