At least 44 people are feared dead after a Boeing 737 crash-landed in the city of Kazan in central Russia, the country's emergencies ministry has said.

The passenger aircraft operated by the regional Tatarstan Airlines exploded and caught fire shortly after landing at an airport in Kazan on Saturday, according to Interfax. The flames were extinguished one hour after the crash.

Irina Rossius, a spokeswoman for the emergencies ministry, said six crew members were among the people on board, which was arriving from Moscow.

Reports of the number of casualties vary, with the Federal Air Transport Agency, putting the number at 50.

A source from the emergencies service told Interfax that the crash was caused a mistake made by the pilots when they entered the second lap. The source added that a technical failure could also be the cause of the incident. The Volta Regional Emergency Center is currently on high alert.

Russia's last plane crash occurred in January when a Red Wings airline skidded off the runway at Moscow's Vnukovo Airport

Eyewitness photo from the scene of the crash in the city of Kazan. (Photo: Alexander Bunin)
Eyewitness photo from the scene of the crash in the city of Kazan. (Photo: Alexander Bunin)