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IAF to receive first indigenous LCA Mark1A fighter by July

In a significant update, the Indian Air Force (IAF) is poised to receive its first LCA Mark 1A fighter aircraft from Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) by July this year. Originally slated for delivery in February-March, the timeline was slightly delayed due to technical issues.

News Arena Network - New Delhi - UPDATED: May 16, 2024, 08:47 AM - 3 mins read

IAF Anticipates Arrival of First LCA Mark1A Fighter. Image X.

IAF to receive first indigenous LCA Mark1A fighter by July

IAF Anticipates Arrival of First LCA Mark1A Fighter. Image X.


In a significant update, the Indian Air Force (IAF) is poised to receive its first LCA Mark 1A fighter aircraft from Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) by July this year. Originally slated for delivery in February-March, the timeline was slightly delayed due to technical issues.

 

According to defence officials, the recent review between the IAF and HAL indicates that the aircraft will be handed over to the IAF by July. The HAL recently conducted the maiden flight of the fighter, with several integration trials expected to conclude in the coming weeks before delivery.

 

The induction of the indigenous fighter aircraft into the IAF marks a pivotal milestone towards achieving self-reliance in the military sector. Officials even suggest that Prime Minister Narendra Modi might be invited to commemorate this significant occasion.

 

The LCA Mark 1A project gained momentum under PM Modi's leadership. With an order worth Rs 48,000 crore for 83 planes already placed, another order for 97 planes, estimated at Rs 65,000 crore, is expected by the end of this fiscal year.

 

This move aligns with the objective of modernising and replacing the IAF's ageing fleet of MiG-21s, MiG-23s, and MiG-27s.

 

The recent tender issued by the Defence Ministry to HAL for the purchase of 97 LCA Mark 1A fighter jets represents the largest order for indigenous military hardware in India's history.

 

This initiative is not only a strategic move to bolster India's defence capabilities but also a significant step towards promoting indigenous manufacturing and providing lucrative business opportunities for small and medium enterprises in the defence sector across the nation.

 

Prime Minister Modi's proactive approach towards revitalising HAL underscores the government's commitment to indigenous defence production. His symbolic sortie in the trainer variant of the indigenous fighter further emphasises his support for indigenous aircraft manufacturing.

 

The plan to acquire 97 additional LCA Mark 1A fighter jets was first announced by IAF Chief VR Chaudhari during his visit to Spain. This ambitious plan reflects India's steadfast commitment to bolstering its indigenous defence capabilities and reducing dependency on foreign imports.

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