ONGC chopper crash report likely by end November

Vol 7, PW 18 (19 Nov 03) News in Brief

By the end of this month, the oil ministry is likely to receive an interim report on the 11th August ONGC-hired helicopter crash offshore Mumbai.

The collection of facts is almost over, says a source on the three-member TS Vijayraghavan panel set up by the oil ministry to probe the crash that killed 27 of 29 people on board. We dont yet know the cause of the crash.

Were waiting for a report from the civil aviation ministry. Adds our source: We are trying our best to submit an interim report by the end of this month or a little later.

So far the panel has held five meetings in Chennai to analyse available evidence. More meetings are scheduled in Delhi from 18th to 20th November.

Former oil secretary TS Vijayraghavan was appointed by the oil ministry on 18th August to head an inquiry with a three-month deadline to submit a report. Indications are that the oil ministry will extend its tenure.