Indian Prime Minister Morarji Desai flew back to New Delhi on Saturday (5 November) after a narrow escape when his Air Force plane crash-landed in the northeastern part of the country killing five of the crew.
GV Prime Minister Morarji Desai down steps of plane and greeted by President Sanjiva Reddy in New Delhi, India
GV Other survivors down steps of plane (2 shots)
GV Desai and Reddy surrounded by people (2 shots)
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Background: Indian Prime Minister Morarji Desai flew back to New Delhi on Saturday (5 November) after a narrow escape when his Air Force plane crash-landed in the northeastern part of the country killing five of the crew. Mr. Desai, who is 81, suffered only cut lips and some minor bruising.
SYNOPSIS: Mr. Desai's Soviet-made TU-124 had overshot the runway and crash-landed in a field on Friday, and he arrived back in New Delhi aboard the same type of aircraft, to be greeted by President Sanjiva Reddy. Cheerful and composed on his return, Mr. Desai told newsmen he felt "quite fit".
Other survivors of the accident travelled back to the Indian capital with Mr. Desai. Several of the party were injured, including the Prime Minister's son, who was slightly hurt. The pilot, who was among the dead, was said to have done a "marvellous job" in saving the lives of the Prime Minister and his party when the plane overshot the runway at Jorhat, hit a tree and came to rest in a rice field. Mr. Desai was pronounced "fine" after a medical checkup. And President Reddy congratulated him on his lucky escape and wished him many more years to lead the nation. Sabotage has been ruled out as a cause of the accident.