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US Air Force's B-1B Lancer heavy bomber to perform fly-by at Aero India 2021

BENGALURU (PTI): Don Heflin, U S Charg dAffaires, will lead a high-level delegation of U S Government officials and defence industry representatives to the Aero India 2021 to be held in Bengaluru from 3rd February.

"I am pleased to head this years U S delegation to Aero India to show our continued commitment to strengthening US-India defence cooperation, in line with India's status as a Major Defence Partner," Heflin was quoted as saying in a US Consulate General Chennai press release on Friday.

"U S participation in Aero India 2021 reflects our increasingly close bilateral defence ties and our shared vision of a free and open Indo-Pacific region", he said.

US participation in Aero India 2021 provides both the US industry and the US military services the opportunity to strengthen military-to-military relations and defence cooperation with India, the statement said.

"Our two militaries work together to uphold a rules-based international order in the Indo-Pacific.

Public and private participation by the United States in Aero India 2021 demonstrates the importance the United States places on its strategic partnership with India", it said.

Leading US defence companies are also participating in Aero India 2021, including Aerospace Quality Research & Development LLC, Airborn Inc., Boeing, IEH Corporation, GE Aviation, General Atomics, Hi-Tech Import Export Corporation, L3Harris, Laversab India, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, and Trakka Systems.

Among the highlights of the show, a B-1B Lancer heavy bomber of the 28th Bomb Wing based out of Ellsworth Air Force Base in South Dakota, will perform a "fly-by."

"The B-1B Lancer, a supersonic heavy bomber, is a truly remarkable aircraft, capable of carrying out missions worldwide from its bases in the United States, as well as from forward deployed locations.

It carries the largest conventional payload of both guided and unguided weapons in the US Air Force and is considered the backbone of America’s long-range bomber force", according to the statement.

In the spirit of bilateral support for the hybrid defence exhibition, the United States Air Force Band of the Pacific based out of Hawaii will perform with Indian percussion (ghatam) artist Giridhar Udupa.

The collaboration will be broadcast at a later date on US Embassy and Consulate Facebook and Instagram pages.

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