Finally the fleet of first five out of 36 Rafales combat aircraft completed their long journey of 7,000 KM from France to India and landed in Ambala Air Force Station at 15:10 hours.
The Birds have landed safely in Ambala.
The touch down of Rafale combat aircrafts in India marks the beginning of a new era in our Military History.
These multirole aircrafts will revolutionise the capabilities of the @IAF_MCC.
— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) July 29, 2020
The five Rafales escorted by 2 Sukhoi SU30 MKIs as they enter the Indian air space.
Water salute to be given to these five combat aircraft at Ambala airbase station. Air Force Chief RKS Bhadauria to be present at the airbase during that time
Controversy or no-controversy Rafale is the best combat aircraft in its class. We can understand this hype as its been nearly 22 years after Indian Air Force inducting a new combat aircraft. Definitely the hype and excitement is real.
Weapon package includes in Rafales provide this aircraft an edge over enemy. From Meteor Beyond Visual Range Air to Air Missile (BVRAAM) to MICA short range AAM, SCALP Air launched cruise missile to HAMMER Armement Air-Sol Modulaire (AASM) is some of best in its kind weapon fitted with the aircraft.
But we need to understand that these 5 out 36 Rafales not going to shift any balance of power against China. Even 36 of them is not enough.
Any equipment in defence need time to develop interoperability with its counterpart equipment, for example Rafales need to talk with other aircraft of IAF like Su-30MKI or with AEW&CS (Airborne Early Warning and Control System) to efficiently work.
Air Force is assured that they will operationalize all these 5 aircrafts as early as in August but in order to achieve full potential, these aircraft will require time.
Though Rafale is fully capable in neutralising any key or strategic enemy position deep down in their territory with SCALP missile as early as they operationalize. These aircrafts is also an outstanding BVR and WVR (Within Visual Range) fighter.
It is in India’s favour that these aircraft finally started coming. Apart from these 2 squadron, Air Force will require at least 2-3 more squadrons of Rafales as early as possible.