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Thursday, September 3, 2009

AP CM died in chopper crash

This photograph released by Telugu Television channel Sakshi TV shows Andhra Pradesh chief minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy, preparing to board the fated helicopter in Hyderabad on Wednesday, September 2, 2009.

The chief minister was traveling from Karnool to Chittor in the state of Andhra Pradesh. He was on a surprise visit to check whether drought relief had reached the people.

The helicopter carrying the chief minister YRS Reddy and four others received instructions from ground control to fly low due to bad weather conditions.

Technical snags are very likely to occur in most choppers while flying low, which could have also been the case with the AP chief minister's chopper.

This August 3, 2005 file photo shows River Krishna and the dense Nallamalla forests. The chief minister's helicopter disappeared in heavy rains when it flew low over the forested region. The area is largely controlled by Maoist rebels.

Supporters in the state prayed for chief minister Y S Rajasekhar Reddy after his chopper went missing in the Nallamalla forests on Wednesday.

Policemen watch television news from a window of the Ground Control Unit at the Begumpet Airport in Hyderabad on Thursday, September 3, 2009, waiting anxiously for any news of the chief minister.

The Bell 430 helicopter which was carrying the Andhra Pradesh chief minister on his way to check whether drought relief had reached villages and also on his pet projects for people.

Debris of the helicopter that carried the Andhra chief minister lies scattered at the crash site on a hill about 275 kilometers (170 miles) south of the state capital, Hyderabad on Thursday, September 3, 2009. Reddy and four other people were killed when their helicopter crashed in the dense jungles of southern India during a pounding rainstorm, the government announced on Thursday.

Principal Secretary S Subramanyam (R) and Chief Security Officer A S C Wesley were also on board the chief minister's chopper. Their dead bodies have also been recovered, along with those of the pilot and the co-pilot.

YSR Reddy was one of the most charismatic leaders in Andhra Pradesh for the Congress party. He had won 33 seats in the recent Lok Sabha elections and was the only Congress chief minister to have completed a five-year tenure in the state since the state was formed.

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