Pokharel added the Twin Otter turboprop aircraft had been found in the western district of Myagdi. He said that the bodies of the passengers could be seen scattered around it "The wreckage of the plane was found in a completely burnt state in Solighopte in Myagdi district," said Pokharel, minister for culture, tourism and civil aviation.
"The team there say that the bodies are scattered and it is not possible to identify anyone right now. More security agencies are being deployed and we are trying to get more information," added the minister.
Helicopters and foot soldiers were deployed by the Nepalese army to search Myagdi, a mountainous district around 220 kilometres west of Kathmandu. The rescue teams rushed to the region after locals reported seeing possible wreckage of the Tara Air plane.
The airline said three crew and 20 passengers, one a Chinese and one a Kuwaiti national, were on board the ill-fated plane. All the others were from Nepal and two victims were children.
Tara Air said the Twin Otter had lost contact with air traffic control around ten minutes after taking off from the tourist town of Pokhara early on Wednesday. The airline's website posted a statement saying weather conditions were good when the plane took off for Jomsom, a popular trekking destination in the Himalayas about 20 minutes' flight from Pokhara. "The weather at both origin and destination airports was favourable and the airport cleared for departure by the control tower at Pokhara," it said.
Tara Air is a subsidiary of Yeti Airlines, a privately-owned domestic carrier founded in 1998. The airline suffered its last fatal accident in 2010.