India confirms MiG 21 shot down, pilot missing

Pakistan claims that he is in their custody, we are ascertaining the facts, says MEA spokesperson

Web Desk

RAWALPINDI: The Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Wednesday said a MiG 21 was shot down and its pilot is missing.

Addressing a press conference, a spokesperson for the Indian MEA said, "We unfortunately lost one MiG-21 in this engagement and an Indian pilot is missing in action. Pakistan claims the pilot is in their custody, however we are ascertaining the facts."

"In the aerial engagement, a Pakistan fighter aircraft was shot down by a MiG-21 Bison. The aircraft was seen by ground forces falling on the Pakistan side," he added.

Moments earlier, Indian media confirmed an Indian Air Force (IAF) wing commander is in Pakistan's custody.

India media reports stated IAF pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan took off in a MiG 21 Bison jet and is yet to return. Wing Commander Abhinandan is the son of a retired Indian Air Marshal, the reports added.

Wing Commander Abhinandan. Photo: Indian media

A video of the captured Indian pilot was released hours after the Pakistan Air Force shot down two Indian jets within the Pakistani airspace and arrested one pilots.

In the video, the captured pilot can be heard saying: “My name is Wing Commander Abhinandan. My service number is 27981. I am a flying pilot. My religion is Hindu.”

When asked to share more, the arrested pilot can be heard saying: “I’m sorry sir, that’s all I’m supposed to tell you.”