The moment of wait is finally set to end. The Indian Air Force (IAF) will formally induct 5 of the 36 Dassault Rafale aircraft on order into its current fleet of fighter jets on Thursday.
The induction ceremony of this technologically advanced aircraft is scheduled for September 10, 2020 at the Air Force Station, Ambala. The aircraft will be part of 17 Squadron called ‘Golden Arrows.’ The first five Indian Air Force Rafale aircraft had arrived at Air Force Station on July 27, 2020 from France.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Florence Parly Minister of the Armed Forces of France will witness the induction ceremony. Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat, Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauria, Defence Secretary Dr. Ajay Kumar, Dr. G Satheesh Reddy, Secretary Department of Defence R&D and Chairman DRDO along with other senior officers of Ministry of Defence and Armed Forces will be present to mark a very important milestone in the history of the IAF.
The French delegation will be represented by Emmanuel Lenain Ambassador of France to India, Air General Eric Autellet, Vice Chief of the Air Staff of the French Air Force and other senior officials. A large delegation of senior functionaries of French Defence Industries which includes Eric Trappier Chairman and Chief Executive of Dassault Aviation and Eric Beranger, CEO, MBDA, European missile systems manufacturer will also be in attendance.
Ms. Parly will be given a ceremonial Guard of Honour upon arrival at Delhi. At Ambala, the programme will include ceremonial unveiling of the Rafale aircraft, a traditional ‘Sarva Dharma Puja,’ Air Display by Rafale and Tejas aircraft as well as by ‘Sarang Aerobatic Team.’ Thereafter, a traditional water cannon salute will be accorded to the Rafale aircraft.
The programme will culminate with the ceremonial induction of Rafale aircraft to 17 Squadron. At the end of the ceremonial events will be the Indian and French delegation level bilateral meetings.