New Delhi, May 22 (ANI): Defence Minister A.K. Antony has expressed profound shock and grief at the loss of 158 lives in the Air India Express crash at Mangalore Airport this morning.
In a condolence message, Antony said, "I am deeply grieved and shocked to learn the loss of precious lives in the Air India plane crash today. I express my heartfelt condolences to the members of the bereaved families. I also wish a speedy recovery to those injured in the crash."
It maybe recalled that the airliner, which was coming in from Dubai, crashed near the airport at around 6.30 a.m.
The Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has said that rescue operations have been halted and the bodies of all the 158 people killed in the crash have been recovered.
"There were 137 adults, 19 children, four infants and six crew members on board. Only eight survived. Four passengers sustained minor injuries. Three are severely injured," Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel had told reporters.
All the passengers were Indian nationals, an Air India official in Dubai said. Many were likely Indian migrant workers in Dubai.
The pilot was Serbian and said to be very experienced. (ANI)