New Delhi: In the last three years, 22 fighter aircraft, including 10 MiG-21 planes, and 18 helicopters of the armed forces have crashed in which 49 people including 44 defence personnel were killed, Lok Sabha was informed on Monday.
"From 2011-12 to 2012-13 and current year, 22 fighter aircraft including 10 MiG-21s and 18 helicopters of armed forces have crashed," Defence Minister A K Antony said in a written reply in Lok Sabha.
In these accidents, apart from the loss of aircraft, 44 defence personnel and five civilians lost their lives, he said.
Replying to another query, the Defence Minister said the government has plans of operating the MiG-21 Bison aircraft till 2025.
"The upgraded version of MiG 21-Bis known as the Bison, is planned to be operational beyond 2019 up to 2025. MiG Bis is planned to be decommissioned in 2018 as originally scheduled," Antony said.
On the investigation into the VIP chopper deal, he said CBI had earlier frozen the accounts of former IAF chief SP Tyagi and his relatives.
"However, subsequently all the bank accounts have been de-frozen as per a court order, imposing certain conditions on the bank account holders," he said.
On the ceasefire violations by Pakistan, Antony said in the last six months, there have been 33 such cases in which one Indian soldier has died while three have been injured.
He said in June alone, 11 such ceasefire violation incidents have been reported.
On the devastation caused by the floods in Uttarakhand, the Minister said around 48.3 kms of roads in stretches of strategic importance with BRO have been washed out.
The roads of strategic importance have been built along the China border, he added.