NEW DELHI, Jan 19:
India’s indigenous Light Combat Aircraft – Tejas will roar over Rajpath, making its debut in the Republic Day parade.
Tejas will lead the fighters flypast, IAF officials announced today. Apart from Tejas, an impressive show of the IAF’s most modern aircraft will be at display.
Enthralling flypast by Su-30 aircraft in Trishul formation and also a high speed run by a single Su-30 followed by vertical Charlie is sure to mesmerise the the Rajpath.
This is for the first time that Tejas is being showcased at the most prestigious event after its induction in the Indian air force on July 1 last year.
The aircraft is being flown by Flying Draggers, the 45 squadron of the IAF. The indigenous fighter has clocked more than 3000 sorties till date without any glitches.
Three LCA aircraft will take off from Malaysia airbase near Bikaner, Rajasthan to reach Rajpath for about an hour returns flight, said the officials.
This is for the first time after almost three decade that an indigenously developed and manufactured aircraft is taking part in the Republic Day parade’s flypast.
Last such aircraft was Marut participated in the parade sometime in mid eighties.
Incidentally, former prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee had named LCA as Tejas, which is the first advance Fly-by-wire (FBW) fighter aircraft designed, developed and manufactured in India.
The aircraft has been designed and developed by Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) and produced by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL).
It is to the credit of its designers, manufacturer, technicians and test crew, that LCA has flown more than 3000 sorties/2000 Hrs till date without any accident.
Tejas is an aircraft with a glass cockpit and is equipped with state of the art Satellite aided Inertial Navigation System. It has a digital computer based attack system and an autopilot. It can fire Air to Air Missiles, Bombs as well as Precision Guided Munitions.
The induction of the aircraft is being undertaken in a phased manner. The IOC aircraft are armed with Close Combat Air to Air Missiles, Helmet Mounted Display and Precision Guided Weapons like Laser Guided Bombs.
These aircraft are also capable of dropping unguided bombs with much higher accuracy due to highly advanced indigenous mission computer.
The FOC aircraft would incorporate Beyond Visual Range (BVR) missiles, improved and better stand-off weapons and air to air refueling capability.
IAF is also pitching for additional LCA Mk 1A which would incorporate new generation Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) Radar with simultaneous air to air and air to ground capability, an integrated advanced Electronic Warfare Suite, advanced air to air missiles and air to ground weapons and maintainability improvements.
The Squadron is presently operating from Bangalore and will be moved to Sulur near Coimbatore later. (UNI)