— ANI (@ANI) July 29, 2020
New Delhi, July 29 : The first batch of five Rafale fighters have landed at the Ambala airbase. The fighter jets earlier entered the Indian airspace at about 1.30 pm and were greeted by an Indian Navy warship, INS Kolkata, deployed in the western Arabian Sea.
The Rafales reached Ambala, their home base, at around 3.10 pm. They will officially be inducted into the Gloden Arrows No 17 squadron of the IAF.
Section 144 has been imposed in Haryana’s Ambala ahead of the arrival of the much-awaited jets, even as Jodhpur has been kept on standby in case weather conditions in Ambala worsen.
Defence Minister Rajnath has confirmed that the five Rafales have landed at the Ambala airbase. He tweeted: “The Birds have landed safely in Ambala. The touch down of Rafale combat aircrafts in India marks the beginning of a new era in our Military History. These multirole aircrafts will revolutionise the capabilities of the @IAF_MCC.”
He tweeted , “I congratulate the IAF on a professionally executed ferry. I am sure that 17 Squadron, the Golden Arrows, will continue to live upto their motto of “Udayam Ajasram”. I am extremely happy that IAF’s combat capability has got a timely boost.
“I also thank the French Government, Dassault Aviation and other French companies for ensuring the timely delivery of the aircraft and its weapons, despite the severe restrictions posed by COVID pandemic.
“The Rafale jets were purchased only because PM Shri @narendramodi took the right decision to get these aircrafts through an Inter-Governmental Agreement with France, after the long pending procurement case for them could not progress. I thank him for his courage & decisiveness.
“This aircraft has very good flying performance and its weapons, radar and other sensors and Electronic Warfare capabilities are amongst the best in the world. Its arrival in India will make the IAF much stronger to deter any threat that may be posed on our country.
“The Rafale jets were purchased when they fully met the operational requirements of the IAF. The baseless allegations against this procurement have already been answered and settled.
“I would like to add, if it is anyone who should be worried about or critical about this new capability of the Indian Air Force, it should be those who want to threaten our territorial integrity.”