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IAF's Super Hercules damaged in Ladakh's Thoise airfield

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NEW DELHI (PTI): A C-130J Super Hercules aircraft of the Indian Air Force suffered damage while taxiing at high altitude Thoise airfield in Ladakh and a Court of Inquiry (CoI) is currently underway.

One of the four engines of the aircraft was damaged in the "ground incident" on December 13 and it was brought back to Hindon airbase on the outskirts of Delhi two weeks after the incident, IAF sources said.

A high-level CoI is currently underway to investigate "every possible aspect" of the incident which came nearly three years after the crash of a C-130J Super Hercules transport aircraft.

Sources, however, did not confirm reports that the commander of the aircraft has been relieved of duties. "Action will be taken based on the findings of the Court of Inquiry," they said.

"The aircraft flew back to home base Hindon from Thoise two weeks after the ground incident," the sources said.

The transport aircraft had taken off from Hindon and the ground incident took place while taxiing at Thoise, one of the highest airfields in the world.

The IAF had inducted six aircraft of that variety bought from the US at a cost of around Rs 6,000 crore (USD 1 billion) in 2010.

India has already ordered six additional aircraft.

In August last year, the Defence Ministry had approved buying one C-130 J Super Hercules aircraft to replace the one that had crashed in 2014 in which five crew members were killed.

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