M A I N   N E W S

Selja, Ahmed escape as chopper crash-lands

Khanvel (Gujarat), March 16
Senior Congress leaders Prithviraj Chouhan, Ahmed Patel and Kumari Selja had a miraculous escape when the rear portion of their chopper, which was following party President Sonia Gandhi's helicopter, broke on landing at the helipad in this South Gujarat village.

Mr Chouhan, who was thrown out of the chopper as it landed with a thud, sustained minor injuries on his chest and back, and was taken to a local hospital, where he was administered first aid.

The pilot and co-pilot of the helicopter were also injured in the mishap, which occurred shortly after Ms Sonia Gandhi landed here to start her two-day roadshow.

Ms Sonia Gandhi, who was mingling with the crowd, also went to the site and later visited the injured at the hospital before embarking on her roadshow.

A shocked Mr Patel was seen jumping out and running away from the helicopter holding Ms Selja by her hand as it continued to jerk and police personnel rushed to rescue those trapped.

The helicopter, which belonged to Delhi-based Ace Aviation, had taken off from Mumbai at 1.54 pm.

Mr Patel later told reporters that Mr Chouhan suffered injuries on his chest and back and "is fully conscious". PTI

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