Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 went missing on March 8, 2014, with 239 people on board while on its way from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. The ill-fated flight disappeared after takeoff and even after a multi-million dollar search operation conducted by Australia, Malaysia and China, there have been no significant clues as to the whereabouts of the jetliner.

Dubbed “the greatest aviation mystery of all times,” the plane was in control of first officer, Fariq Hamid,27 years old at the time, and pilot in command, Zaharie Ahmad Shah, 53 at the time.

Just forty-two minutes into the flight, the plane lost contact with air traffic control leading up to a massive search operation stretching from the Indian Ocean west of Australia to Central Asia.

After the flight path was studied in its preliminary stage, the search for the Boeing 777-200 concentrated in the South China Sea. It was determined at the time that flight 370 had turned to the west shortly after the transponder was switched off. Search also continued in the Strait of Malacca and the Andaman Sea.

In June 2014, authorities from Australia, Malaysia and China said that the search for the missing Malaysian Airlines Flight will move farther south of the initial underwater search zone to an area described as “the highest priority for future search efforts.”

“Specialists have analysed satellite communications information—information which was never initially intended to have the capability to track an aircraft—and performed extremely complex calculations,” Warren Truss, Australia’s deputy prime minister and minister for infrastructure and regional development, said at the time. “The new priority area is still focused on the seventh arc, where the aircraft last communicated with satellite. We are now shifting our attention to an area further south along the arc based on these calculations.”

The search for the plane faced several bumps due to the remote location of the suspected crash site. Even as 100 days passed since the plane disappeared, Malaysia suggested a tripartite meeting for China and Australia to come together to help locate the plane.
By 2015, the international search, led by Australia, was taking place in a 46,332-square-mile area in the southern Indian Ocean, where authorities believed the plane went down.
Till this time, no concrete clues were found as to the whereabouts of the plane. Meanwhile, families of those on board the plane were getting anxious for answers. Some also blamed the governments for not doing enough to help find the plane. To add fuel to the fire, conspiracy theorists were on their toes to come up with bizarre claims as to what might have happened to Flight MH370.
As tensions escalated a year after the plane’s disappearance, the first major breakthrough came when a debris was found on July 29, 2015. After inspection, it was confirmed that the debris was the right wing flaperon that washed up on a beach on the French island of Réunion, about 2,300 miles west of the Indian Ocean area that was being searched by Australian authorities.
Over the next year and a half, 26 more pieces of debris were found on the shores of Tanzania, Mozambique, South Africa, Madagascar, and Mauritius.
Three of the 27 pieces were positively identified as coming from Flight 370. The debris, believed to be cabin interior, suggested that the plane had broken up. However, it was not known if the plane broke up in the air or on impact with the ocean.
In January 2017, the search for the plane was called off as they hit a roadblock. An American company, Ocean Infinity, received permission to continue searching until May 2017.