Four more Rafale fighter jets have arrived in India on from France, the Indian Air Force mentioned on Wednesday.
“After a direct ferry from Merignac Air Base, France, the 5th batch of Rafales arrived in India on 21 April. The fighters flew a distance of almost 8,000Kms with air-to-air refuelling support by @Armee_de_lair and UAE AF. IAF thanks both the Air Forces for their co-operation,” the IAF mentioned in a tweet.
Earlier, Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria flagged off 4 Rafale fighter jets for India from a army airbase in France, individuals acquainted with the event mentioned.
Air Chief Marshal Bhadauria visited a Rafale plane coaching facility on the third day of his five-day go to to France. He additionally thanked the French aerospace business for guaranteeing well timed supply of the jets.
“Air Chief Mshl RKS Bhadauria on an official tour to France lauds pilots and sees off the following batch of Rafales on a non cease flight to India with mid air refueling by French Air pressure and UAE.
“Thanks France especially FASF and French Industry for timely delivery & pilot training on schedule despite COVID,” the Indian embassy in France tweeted.
The Indian embassy didn’t point out the variety of plane flagged off by the IAF Chief however individuals related to the occasion mentioned 4 jets fashioned the brand new batch that left from France’s Merignac airbase.
In his transient remarks, the IAF Chief mentioned among the Rafale plane have been delivered a “little bit” forward of time and it has contributed to the general fight potential of the Indian Air Force (IAF).
Ahead of his go to, army officers in Delhi mentioned that his journey to France is anticipated to spice up cooperation between the IAF and the French Air and Space Force (FASF).
“This ferry, which is fifth from here, marks the end of the third batch of our pilots and all our maintenance crew. The Rafale training centre has provided world class training and it is because of the level and quality of training that we were able to operationalise the aircraft quickly,” he mentioned.
He additionally thanked the French authorities, the French Air Force for offering the required assist for the coaching programme in addition to for ferrying of the plane to India.
The arrival of the brand new batch of the plane will pave the way in which for the IAF to lift a second squadron of the Rafale jets. The new squadron will likely be primarily based in Hasimara air base in West Bengal.
The first Rafale squadron is predicated in Ambala air pressure station. A squadron contains round 18 plane.
India had signed an inter-governmental settlement with France in September 2016 for procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets at a value of round Rs 58,000 crore.
So far, 14 Rafale jets are working in the IAF and the quantity will go as much as 18 after the arrival of the brand new batch.
The first batch of 5 Rafale jets arrived in India on July 29 final.
On Tuesday, Air Chief Marshal Bhadauria held talks with Gen Philippe Lavigne, Chief of Staff of French Air and Space Force (FASF), on methods to additional develop cooperation between the 2 sides. (With PTI Inputs)