Lt Col KV ThomasLt Col KV Thomas ( 704/ 1976) was among the three that perished with the BSF helicopter on anti-Naxal duty that crashed on the outskirts of Ranchi today, killing the other pilot Captain S P Singh and technician Manoj Kumar Swain on board. On an anti-Naxal reconnaissance, the HAL – make Helicopter caught fire and crashed in the Kolad forest at Khakra village.

According to the Jharkhand police spokesperson R.K. Mallik said:  The chopper crashed at 9 a.m., 20 minutes after it took off from the Birsa Munda Airport in Ranchi. It was going to Chaibasa. It caught fire due to technical difficulties. We cannot say the exact reason. Only after an investigation by experts can we come to any conclusion.

According to a report in the Telegraph, “the Dhruv, which exploded mid-air before disintegrating into pieces, is the second BSF chopper flown by Pawan Hans that crashed this year.

 As the bodies are badly burnt, the Central Reserve Police Force deployed in that area has a problem in identifying them. Even the helicopter is completely burnt. Two bodies have been recovered, Mr. Mallik said.

 When the helicopter caught fire, it was 3,500-4,000 feet above the ground. So there was no possibility of any Maoist attack. There is no civilian casualty as it crashed in a dense forest.

The wreckage of the Dhruv helicopter
Pix Credit & Rights : The Hindu/ Manob Chakraborthy

Lt Col KV Thomas (Retd) was commissioned into the Regt of Arty on 07 June 1980. A very respected officer and a perfect gentleman, his demise leaves an irreparable void in the Gunner Fraternity. Lt Col  Thomas had joined Pawan Hans approximately a year ago and had been flying helicopters pressed into anti-Naxalite operations and deployed in Ranchi.

Lt Col KV Thomas  is survived by his wife, Annie and two boys, George and Raphael. While Annie teaches in a school in the NCR region, older son is a B Com student and the younger is still in school.

The  Burial is scheduled at 3.00 p.m.on 21 October 2011  at ‘Our Lady of Lourde’ Church situated at Sector 19, Dwaraka, New Delhi.

Visit the Online Tribute Page for Lt Col KV Thomas here.

The TimesNow Report on the incident.

A non-syndicated video footage of the incident area.

The Address in New Delhi :
House No.55, (Second floor), MIG House, DDA Flats, Keshav Kunj Apartments, Sector-17, Dwaraka, N.Delhi. [ The nearest metrostation to the residence is sector – 13 DWARAKA metrostation ]

Salut and Respect .

Rest in Peace, Sir.

One Response

  1. I am the wife of Lt Col K V Thomas who was killed in the copter crash near Ranchi on 19 October 2011. I was deeply touched when I saw the tribute you have put on the page for him.
    I am also grateful for the fond and deeply moving note In Memoriam of Lt Col KV Thomas, by M Balachandran ( 697/1976 ).

    He always wanted me to come and see his old school and had promised to take me there as he held his Alma Mater in high esteem. I will have to make the visit alone now.

    With regards
    Annie Thanjan Thomas.

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