This Republic Day, Rafale jets, whose induction into the IAF began last September and is work in progress, will make a debut in the Republic Day fly-past. Flt Lt Bhawana Kanth, amongst the first three women fighter pilots of the Indian Air Force (IAF), will also be a part of the Republic Day Parade.
This will be the first time a woman fighter pilot will be part of the parade.
She will be part of the tableau that will showcase mock-ups of the light combat aircraft, light combat helicopter and the Sukhoi-30 fighter plane, according to a report by Hindustan Times.
“Since my childhood, I have been watching Republic Day parade on television and it’s a matter of pride that now I’m participating in it. I would love to fly other fighter jets, including Rafale and Sukhoi,” she told India Today.
Rafale jets to make debut
Rafale fighter plane, the latest multi-role fighter aircraft acquired by the Indian Air Force, will feature in India’s Republic Day parade this year and will be part of the flypast at the culmination of the parade. Some new formations will also be seen for the first time.
IAF Spokesperson Wing Commander Indranil Nandi told news agency ANI that a total of 42 aircraft will be seen in the flypast including 15 fighter planes, five transport and one vintage aircraft.