India to induct 5 Rafale jets

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NEW DELHI, July 21 (Xinhua) — The Indian Air Force (IAF) is scheduled to induct its first batch of five Rafale fighter jets imported from France on July 29, officials said Tuesday.

The induction, according to the federal Ministry of Defense, will take place at air force station Ambala in the northern state of Haryana, subject to weather conditions.

“The first batch of five IAF Rafale is likely to arrive in India by end July 2020. The aircraft will be inducted at air force station Ambala on 29 July subject to weather. No media coverage is planned on arrival,” a statement issued by the defense ministry said on Monday. “The final induction ceremony will take place in second half of August 20 wherein full media coverage would be planned.”

Officials said IAF personnel have undergone comprehensive training on the Rafales.

“IAF aircrew and ground crew have undergone comprehensive training on the aircraft, including its highly advanced weapons systems and are fully operational now. Post arrival, efforts will focus on operationalization of the aircraft at the earliest,” the ministry said.

India in 2016 signed a deal with France for purchase of 36 Rafale fighter jets in a bid to bolster the country’s military image. Enditem

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