With Chinese Jets On Radar, Dassault Rafale Planes All Set To Hit Enemy Positions

The first batch of five Dassault Rafale jets flew out of Merignac airbase in southern France’s Bordeaux today and will arrive in India via the UAE on Wednesday, July 29. The much-awaited Rafale jets will be officially inducted and join the Indian Air Force fleet in Hasimara airbase in Haryana’s Ambala. 

The five aircraft will be the first tranche of the 36 planes bought by India from France in a Rs 59,000-crore inter-governmental deal in 2016.

First Batch Of Rafales For India Flies Out Of France

The Rafale aircraft will cover a distance of approximately 7,000 km from France to India with air-to-air refuelling and a single stop at a French airbase in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

“Delivery of ten aircraft has been completed on schedule. Five will stay back in France for training Mission. The delivery of all thirty-six aircraft will be completed on schedule by the end of 2021,” the Indian embassy in France said in a statement.

The Indian ambassador to France, Jawed Ashraf, interacted with the Indian pilots before they took off from France. “Bon Voyage: Indian Ambassador to #France interacts with the Indian pilots of the Rafale. Congratulates and wishes them a safe flight to India with a single hop,” the Indian embassy in France tweeted.

The first squadron of the jets will be stationed at Ambala air force station, considered one of the most strategically located bases of the IAF. India had signed an inter-governmental agreement with France in September 2016 for the acquisition of 36 Rafale fighter jets at a cost of around $7.5 Billion.