BARIPADA: A Hawk aircraft of the Indian Air Force today crashed in Odisha's Mayurbhanj district during a routine training sortie after taking off from Kalaikunda airbase in West Bengal but the pilot managed to eject safely, police said.
Eyewitnesses said that the plane went up in flames after it crashed on the banks of Subarnarekha river and its debris lay scattered at the site, police said.
The incident occurred near Mahuladangiri under Saraskana block in Mayurbhanj district bordering Jharkhand, said Inspector In-Charge (IIC) of Jharpokharia police station, Sarat Kumar Mahalik.
The pilot of the aircraft, however, ejected shortly before the crash, he said adding fire brigade and police team had also reached the site.
A court of inquiry has been ordered into the accident, sources said.
Hawk is an advanced trainer jet.
A rescue team from Kaleikundua has reached the site in a helicopter to take stock of the situation, the IIC said, adding the trainee pilot was sent back in a helicopter.