Group Captain Varun Singh, who was the only survivor of the Indian Air Force helicopter crash in Tamil Nadu on December 8, died on Wednesday. Singh had been on life support at a hospital in Bengaluru.
“IAF is deeply saddened to inform the passing away of braveheart Group Captain Varun Singh, who succumbed this morning to the injuries sustained in the helicopter accident on 08 Dec 21,” the Indian Air Force said in a tweet. “IAF offers sincere condolences and stands firmly with the bereaved family.”
Singh had sustained severe burns in the crash that took place near Tamil Nadu’s Coonoor town. He had been moved from Coonoor to a military hospital in Bengaluru, NDTV reported.
The 13 others on board, including Chief of Defence Staff Bipin Rawat and his wife Madhulika Rawat, had died in the crash.
On Wednesday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi offered condolences to Singh’s friends and family.
“Group Captain Varun Singh served the nation with pride, valour and utmost professionalism,” he said in a tweet. “I am extremely anguished by his passing away. His rich service to the nation will never be forgotten. Condolences to his family and friends.”
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said he was “pained beyond words”. He described the officer as a “true fighter who fought till his last breath”.
Home Minister Amit Shah also expressed grief over the officer’s death. “May god bless the brave’s soul and give strength to his family,” he added.