A MiG-27 ground attack aircraft from the Indian Air Force crashed in Banar, near Jodhpur, India, on September 4, 2018. The plane was destroyed, but the pilot managed to eject safely and no ground casualties were reported.

The plane departed from Jodhpur Air Base for a routine mission along with at least one other aircraft. Shortly after takeoff, it crashed in a field, reports the news agency Xinhua. Defense spokesperson Sombit Ghosh announced that an investigation into the crash would be opened.

This MiG-27 was part of the last two remaining squadrons of the 43-year-old Soviet-developed ground attack aircraft within the IAF. They are due to be retired by the end of 2019. Two squadrons of MiG-21 are bound for the same fate.

The Indian Air Force is currently awaiting several replacements for its fleet, including 36 Sukhoi Su-30 to be delivered by 2019 and 36 Dassault Rafales between 2019 and 2022. The IAF operates seven different types of fighter and attack aircraft (eight with the upcoming Rafale), which is a heavy logistical burden. In comparison, the United States Air Force operates six different platforms (including the A-10 Thunderbolt).