Two indigenously developed Tejas Light Combat Aircraft will shortly join the Indian Air Force at IAF’s Aircraft Systems & Test Establishment in Bengaluru on Friday as part of the first squadron.
They will launch the new Squadron 45 ‘Flying Daggers’, which will get the remaining 18 aircraft including four trainers in 2018.
A ‘Sarva Dharma Pooja’ (inter-faith prayer) was conducted before the induction. Such worships are customary at inductions and before staff training sessions, an IAF official said.
Air Marshal Jasbir Walia, Air Officer Commanding-in Chief, Southern Air Command, will formally induct the squadron at the Aircraft System Testing Establishment, according to an IAF communique.
Sulur in Tamil Nadu has been chosen as the LCA base. The LCA project began in 1985 and the IAF planned to induct it in 1994 to replace the MiG-21s. After long delays, the LCA achieved the first level of flight worthiness or Initial Operational Clearance in December 2013. The Final Operational Clearance is expected by this year-end.