Agni Air crashed at a hill in Marfa VDC-5 near Jomsom of Mustang (updates with photograph)

According to Laxmi Raj Sharma, the Mustang chief district officer, 15 bodies have been recovered. Among those killed are pilot Prabhu Sharan Pathak and co-pilot JD Maharjan. The rest of the victims are Indian nationals who were on a pilgrimage to the Muktinath temple.

The air hostess R Haiju and five other passengers, including two children, an Indian national and two Europeans, have been rescued alive. All the injured have been airlifted to Pokhara. Of the injured, three are receiving treatment at Manipal Hospital.

Pramod Pandey, sales and marketing director of the Agni Air, quoting hospital sources said the Indian national is in critical condition, while the rest are out of danger. The two Europeans have been identified as Danish nationals.

The plane 9N AIG-D228 (Dornier) had left Pokhara airport at 9:30 am, carrying 18 passengers with three crew members, and crashed fifteen minutes later on the cliff, while it was about to return to Pokhara following technical glitch, Yogendra Kunwar, assistant manager at air traffic control in the Pokhara airport said.

Locals, police and Nepal Army personnel are carrying out search operation. CDO Sharma said search operation being hampered due to strong winds at the crash site.
Seven people were rescued alive from the crash site. There were 21 persons, including three crew members and 18 foreigners, on board in the 9N AIG aircraft.

According to Pratap Babu Tiwari, Chief of Pokhara Airport, those rescued have been flown to Pokhara by Simrik Air’s chopper and Tara Air aircraft for further treatment. One among the rescued is said to be in critical condition.

Tiwari who was at the crash site informed that two Denish nationalities and an airhostess Roshni Haiju were airlifted by an aircraft of Tara Air to Pokhara Airport while a Simrik Air chopper rescued two Indian children and an adult to Manipal Hospital.

The deceased have been identified as Pilot Prabhu Sharan Pathak and Co-pilot JD Maharjan. The identification of other deceased has not been established yet.

The plane was heading to Jomsom from Pokhara. The reason behind the crash is yet to be ascertained.

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