IAF likely to operationalise second squadron of Rafale fighter jets by July-end

Currently, the IAF has around 25 Rafale jets and the remaining ordered aircraft are expected to be delivered by 2022.

Published: 13th July 2021 10:58 PM  |   Last Updated: 13th July 2021 10:58 PM   |  A+A-

Rafale fighter jets

Rafale Fighter Jet. (Photo | Shekhar Yadav, EPS)


NEW DELHI: The Indian Air Force (IAF) is likely to operationalise its second squadron of the Rafale combat aircraft by the end of July and it will be based in Hasimara air base in West Bengal, officials said on Tuesday.

The first squadron of the Rafale jets is stationed at Ambala Air Force station in Haryana.

The first batch of five Rafale jets arrived in India on July 29, 2020, nearly four years after India signed an inter-governmental agreement with France to procure 36 of the aircraft at a cost of around Rs 59,000 crore.

Currently, the IAF has around 25 Rafale jets and the remaining ordered aircraft are expected to be delivered by 2022.

The first squadron will look after Pakistan border on western frontier and the northern frontier.

The second squadron will look after the eastern frontier of India, the officials mentioned.

The formal induction ceremony of the Rafale fleet had taken place at Ambala on September 10 last year.

Later on, other batches of the fighter jet also arrived in India.

The IAF officials said the second Rafale squadron would be operationalised at the next main operating base at Hasimara by July-end.

A squadron comprises around 18 aircraft.

The Rafale jets are India's first major acquisition of fighter planes in 23 years after the Sukhoi jets were imported from Russia.

The Rafale jets are capable of carrying a range of potent weapons.

European missile maker MBDA's Meteor beyond visual range air-to-air missile, Scalp cruise missile and MICA weapons system will be the mainstay of the weapons package of the Rafale jets.

The IAF is also procuring a new generation medium-range modular air-to-ground weapon system Hammer to integrate with the Rafale jets.

Hammer (Highly Agile Modular Munition Extended Range) is a precision-guided missile developed by French defence major Safran.

The missile was originally designed and manufactured for the French Air Force and Navy.

Meteor is the next generation of BVR air-to-air missile designed to revolutionise air-to-air combat.

The weapon has been developed by MBDA to combat common threats facing the UK, Germany, Italy, France, Spain and Sweden.

Follow The New Indian Express channel on WhatsApp


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp