3 Sep 2009

India politician killed in helicopter crash

9:12 pm on 3 September 2009

A powerful Indian politician has been killed along with four others in a helicopter crash in southern India, the government has confirmed.

The wreckage of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Rajasekhara Reddy's helicopter was found on a hill 70km east of Kurnool on Thursday, a day after it disappeared, the BBC reports.

Mr Reddy, 60, was an influential politician from the Congress party. He had been elected for a second term in the general elections this year.

Home Minister P Chidambaram said the bodies Mr Reddy, his personal assistant, security officer and two pilots were being retrieved from the crash site.

The discovery of the helicopter follows a massive search and rescue operation launched by the state government, involving 11 aircraft and more than 2000 security staff.