Local residents near Pulicat were in for a shock on Saturday morning after fishermen of Koraikuppam village spotted wrecks of an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) washed ashore.
The vehicle, two metres long and three metres wide, had its face and one of its wings made of fibre damaged but was said to have had some batteries and lens intact, said a fisherman who retrieved it. It had Banshee and the number 7,145 printed on the body and a target printed on the wing.
A similar-looking aerial vehicle washed ashore in Odisha nearly three months ago, but the village is located just 20 kilometres from a test range of the Indian Air Force. Officials suspect that it could be one such vehicle that washed ashore in Pulicat and have sought details from Indian Coast Guard. Going by the name, police suspect it to be an aerial target for surface-to-air and air-to-air weapon systems developed by Meggitt Defence Systems.
Until Saturday evening, officials did not retrieve the UAV from the fishermen. When contacted, Tiruvallur Superintendent P Aravidhan said that it will be destroyed after orders are received from the magistrate.