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    Many feared dead as Indian plane overshoots runway


    by ODN


    Around 160 people are feared dead in an Air India plane crash at an airport in southern India.

    Home minister of the state of Karnataka Dr V S Acharya said there may be a few survivors after a Boeing 737 from Dubai overshot the runway at Mangalore and crashed.

    The plane was carrying 169 people on board when it crashed at 6.30am local time.

    The Foreign Office says it is urgently investigating whether there were any Britons on board.

    Heavy rains lashing the coastal city were making rescue efforts difficult and it is believed the cloudy conditions and reduced visibility may have contributed to the incident.

    Television reports said India's Civil Aviation minister Dr Praful Patel was on his way to the city from New Delhi.

    Dr Acharya said: "There were a total of 169 people on board and just a handful have survived. Rescue teams are at the site and fire-fighters are trying to extinguish the flames from the aircraft."

    He told a news channel that around six to seven people were taken to a nearby hospital.