A plane disappears in Nepal with 22 people on board

A plane disappears in Nepal with 22 people on board

KATHMANDU, Nepal — A small plane carrying 22 people on a popular tourist route disappeared in the mountains of Nepal today, according to authorities.

The Tara Airlines plane, which was on a scheduled 15-minute flight to the mountain town of Jomson, left the tourist town of Pokhara , 125 miles east of Kathmandu. It lost contact with the airport tower shortly after takeoff.

There were six foreign nationals on board the plane, four Indians and two Germans , according to a police officer who requested anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

There was no information on the status of the Twin Otter plane and a search operation was launched, police officer Ramesh Thapa said.

In recent days, it has rained in the area, although flights have operated normally. Planes on that route pass between mountains before landing in a valley.

The area is popular with foreign mountaineers who travel the region’s trails , as well as Indian and Nepalese pilgrims who visit the revered Muktinah temple.

In 2016, a Tata Airlines Twin Otter plane flying the same route crashed after takeoff, killing all 23 people on board. In 2012, another 15 people were killed when an Agni Air plane also traveled from Pokhara to Jomsom crashed. Six people survived. In 2014, a Nepal Airlines plane crashed on a flight from Pokhara to Jumla, killing all 18 people on the plane.

In 2018, a US-Bangla passenger plane from Bangladesh crashed on landing in Kathmandu, killing 49 of the 71 people on board.

Melissa Galbraith
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