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Aero India 2023

IAF inducts second SU-30 MKI squadron in NE India


Su-30 MKI of the Indian Air Force flying in formation. Photo: IAF.

CHABUA, ASSAM (PTI): The Indian Air Force (IAF) Tuesday raised a new squadron of its frontline Sukhoi-30 MKI fighter aircraft at the air base in the northeast (NE) as part of a strategic deployment of advanced assets close to the Chinese border.

"102 squadron of Sukhoi-30 multi-role fighter aircraft was raised Tuesday at Chabua air base. This is the second Sukhoi squadron to be deployed in the north-eastern region after Tezpur air base," an IAF spokesperson said here.

To commemorate the raising of the new squadron, three Su-30 MKI fighter jet planes were flown to Chabua airbase from Tezpur, he said.

The first Sukhoi squadron in the north-east was raised at Tezpur in 2009.

"The new squadron will get its full complement of 16 to 18 aircraft in the coming few months," the spokesperson said.

IAF has plans of deploying a total of four squadrons at these two bases which were earlier operating different types of the MiG-21 series fighter aircraft.

This would be the seventh squadron of Sukhois as three are deployed in Lohegaon in Pune, two in Bareilly and one in Tezpur.

The IAF presently flies over 125 Sukhois in various roles and has plans to induct a total of 280 such air superiority fighter aircraft in this decade.

More than 15 squadrons of the over 35 tonne aircraft would form the backbone of IAF lethal strike power in the coming decades along with the 126 M-MRCA, which the Air Force plans to buy, indigenous Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) and the fifth generation fighter planes being jointly developed with Russia.

Eastern Air Commander Air Marshal K K Nohwar presided over the induction ceremony.

In a symbolic function, a SU-30 MKI took off from the air base and also performed an overshoot before landing. This was followed by a fly past by three SU-30 MKI planes.

Among others who were present at the function were Chabua Air Officer Commanding, Air Commodore Mrigendra Singh and senior officers from the Army.

Air Marshal Nohwar told reporters here that the runway was being repaired and would soon be open to operations of the fixed-wing aircraft for better air maintenance.

Jointly developed by Russia's Sukhoi Corporation and India's Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) for the IAF, the SU-30 MKI is a variant of the Sukhoi Su-30 and is a heavy class, long-range air superiority fighter that can also act as a strike fighter aircraft.

Tags:

IAF  Su-30 MKI  India  

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