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Crash fears float as Malaysian plane with 239 aboard missing

Five Indians on board
Five Indians, including three from one family, on board were identified as Chetna Kolekar, 55, Swanand Kolekar, 23, Vinod Kolekar, 59, Chandrika Sharma, 51, and Kranti Shirsatha, 44
Chennai-based Sharma had taken the flight from Kuala Lumpur on her way to Mongolia to participate in a conference
One Indian-origin Canadian Muktesh Mukherjee, 42, was also on board

Beijing/Kuala Lumpur, March 8
A Beijing-bound Malaysia Airlines flight with 239 persons, including five Indians, on board was presumed to have crashed today and the worst is feared as two large oil slicks have been spotted off Vietnam's sea coast where the plane went missing.

The Boeing 777-200 Flight MH370 with 227 passengers, including two infants, from 14 different countries and 12 crew members disappeared last night at 23.10 IST.

Vietnamese air force planes spotted two large oil slicks off the southern tip of Vietnam that authorities suspect are from the missing plane, a Vietnamese government statement said.

The slicks were each between 10 km and 15 km long. The statement said the slicks were consistent with the kinds that would be left by fuel from a crashed plane. Earlier, the carrier said in a statement, "The sea mission will continue while the air mission will recommence at daylight." Malaysia Airlines said the last point of contact with the plane was approximately 120 nautical miles east of Kota Baru in the South China Sea.

Malaysian PM Najib Razak said the area of search for the plane would be expanded from the point of its last contact. Najib said more logistical support had been put into operation. PTI





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