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Deadly plane crash in southern India

Deadly plane crash in southern India
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An Air India Express plane from Dubai has crashed in southern India, killing at least 158 people.

Rescuers have pulled eight people alive from the wreckage and they have been taken to hospital.

A total of 166 passengers and crew were on board when it came down at 6.30 a.m local time.

A desperate search is now under way for more survivors with rescue efforts hampered by a raging fire and rough wooded terrain where the aircraft ended up.

The aircraft ploughed into a forest and burst into flames after skidding off the runway at Mangalore, its scheduled destination.

Reports say the landing strip is surrounded by hills and the plane went over a cliff into a valley.

Officials say initial indications suggest the crash was an accident.

Air India Express is the low-cost arm of state-run carrier Air India. A spokesman said this is the first crash involving an Air Express plane in the firm’s five year history.