Condolences have started to pour in following the announcement of the sudden demise of chief of defence staff (CDS) Genral Bipin Rawat in a helicopter crash. 

The IAF has confirmed that General Bipin Rawat, his wife Madhulika Rawat and 11 other persons on board the ill-fated helicopter have died in crash. 

Bipin Rawat

Condoling the demise of Bipin Rawat, President Ram Nath Kovind, who is the supreme commander of the armed forces said: “I am shocked and anguished over the untimely demise of Gen. Bipin Rawat and his wife, Madhulika ji. The nation has lost one of its bravest sons. His four decades of selfless service to the motherland was marked by exceptional gallantry and heroism. My condolences to his family.” 

Also read: CDS General Bipin Rawat died in helicopter crash, confirms IAF

Prime Minister Narendra Modi said: “I am deeply anguished by the helicopter crash in Tamil Nadu in which we have lost Gen Bipin Rawat, his wife and other personnel of the Armed Forces. They served India with utmost diligence. My thoughts are with the bereaved families.” 

PM Modi added: “Gen Bipin Rawat was an outstanding soldier. A true patriot, he greatly contributed to modernising our armed forces and security apparatus. His insights and perspectives on strategic matters were exceptional. His passing away has saddened me deeply.” 

“As India’s first CDS, Gen Rawat worked on diverse aspects relating to our armed forces including defence reforms. He brought with him a rich experience of serving in the Army. India will never forget his exceptional service,” he further said. 

Also read: Helicopter crash: Chopper with Chief of Defence Staff Bipin Rawat, wife on board crashes in Tamil Nadu

Defence minister Rajnath Singh said: “Deeply anguished by the sudden demise of Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat, his wife and 11 other Armed Forces personnel in an extremely unfortunate helicopter accident today in Tamil Nadu. His untimely death is an irreparable loss to our Armed Forces and the country.” 

Singh added: “General Rawat had served the country with exceptional courage and diligence. As the first Chief of Defence Staff he had prepared plans for jointness of our Armed Forces.” 

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Home minister Amit Shah said: “A very sad day for the nation as we have lost our CDS, General Bipin Rawat Ji in a very tragic accident. He was one of the bravest soldiers, who has served the motherland with utmost devotion. His exemplary contributions & commitment cannot be put into words. I am deeply pained.” 

An Indian Air Force (IAF) helicopter carrying CDS General Bipin Rawat, his wife and other top military officials had crashed at Coonoor in Tamil Nadu on Wednesday. 

There were fourteen people on board the ill-fated IAF chopper. 

CDS General Bipin Rawat was among the 14 people who were on-board the IAF helicopter that crashed between Coimbatore and Sulur in Tamil Nadu.    

Bipin Rawat

Identities of the bodies were ascertained through DNA testing. 

Meanwhile, defence minister Rajnath Singh has met the family members of CDS General Bipin Rawat in New Delhi.  

Those onboard included CDS General Bipin Rawat, his wife Madhulika Rawat, Brigadier LS Lidder, Lieutenant Colonel Harjinder Singh, Naik Gursewak Singh, Naik Jitendra Kr, Lieutenant Naik Vivek Kumar, Lieutenant Naik B Sai Teja and Havildar Satpal.   

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