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Top ONGC Official Among 4 Killed In Chopper Crash Off Mumbai Coast

MUMBAI: Four people have died in a helicopter crash off the coast of Mumbai today. A Pawan Hans helicopter on duty for ONGC, with seven people on board, crashed off the coast of Mumbai. The bodies of the three people, including a senior ONGC officer, and the debris of the chopper have been found, Coast Guard officials said. A search operation is on to locate the other passengers.

Sources said the seven-year-old chopper -- a VTPWA Dauphin AS 365 N3 -- took off from Juhu at 10.20 this morning. It last contacted the Air Traffic Control at 10. 35 am. At the time, it was 30 nautical miles off Mumbai.

The chopper was headed for the Mumbai High North Field and was expected to land there before 11 am. Five ONGC personnel and 2 pilots were on board when the helicopter went missing.

The Coast Guard has been alerted and a search operation is on, the sources said. "We have already diverted ship and aircraft to the area," an officer said.  

"VTPWA Dauphin AS 365 N3 was scheduled to land at North Field of ONGC at 10.58am but didn't land at the scheduled time. No contact could be established after 10.30am and search operations were launched soon after," an official said.

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