An Indian air force Antonov An-32 transport has been reported missing in the country's northern Arunachal Pradesh state and is believed to have crashed in the mountainous region.

The aircraft, which is reported to have 12 people on board, was on its way to Jorhat in Assam state from the Mechuka air strip in West Siang, close to the Indo-Chinese border.

It went missing around 14:00 Indian time and air force helicopters were sent to comb the area and search for the aircraft. The search operations were later called off due to poor visibility soon after sunset and will resume on Wednesday morning.

India's air force has about 100 An-32s that were first inducted in the early 1980s. It was planning to upgrade the engines and avionics for the aircraft, which can carry up to 40 passengers, in order to extend their life. It plans to eventually replace them with the medium-role transport aircraft that India is jointly developing with Russia.

Source: Flight International