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Massive 75-aircraft R-Day Flypast To Commemorate 75 Years Of Independence
Jaguars to fly in ‘75’-shape formation at ‘largest & grandest’ flypast; Navy P8I, MiG-29Ks to debut at Parade in massive display of airpower
Photo Credit : IAF
File Photo of Republic Day Parade flypast
The “largest and grandest” flypast involving 75 aircraft will be conducted at this year’s Republic Day Parade in the Capital to commemorate the 75th year of Indian Independence.
The high point of this flypast, and indeed the Parade, will be the massive Amrit formation involving 17 Jaguar deep penetration strike aircraft which will fly to etch ‘75’ in the sky. The Republic Day flypast plan was announced by IAF spokesman Wing Commander Indraneel Nandi on January 17.
While the newly-inducted Rafale multi-role fighter will demonstrate its top billing in the IAF fleet with the Vinaash formation featuring five of these aircraft, the Indian Navy’s game-changing P8I Long Range Maritime Reconnaissance and anti-submarine aircraft will make its debut at the Parade in this massive display of Indian air power. The P8I will be escorted by two carrier-borne MiG-29K naval fighters, which will also be making their maiden appearance at the Republic Day Parade.
All air assets of the IAF, excluding single-engine assets like the Light Combat Aircraft and the MiG-21, will feature in the flypast, which will also commemorate the Golden Jubilee of India’s victory in the 1971 War with the Megha and Tangail formations.
While the Meghna formation will feature a Chinook CH-47 heavy-lift helicopter in the lead along with four Mi-171V helicopters in an Arrow shape, the Tangail formation will feature the vintage Dakota escorted by two Dornier-228 aircraft. Operations at Meghna and Tangail signify important landmarks in the 1971 War.
‘Transformation for the Future’ will be the theme of the IAF Tableaux at the Parade. It will feature models of the MiG-21 and Gnat fighters which were the highlight of the use of air power by India in the 1971 War.
The tableaux will also feature the Light Combat Helicopter and its weapon, the Dhruvastra Anti-Tank Guided Missile. The Aslesha Mk 1 3D low-level radar which detects threats flying at low and medium altitudes is also a highlight of the display, as is the GSAT 7A satellite which is the backbone of the IAF’s network-centric capabilities.
The Rafale fighter and its weaponry, including the Scalp ground attack cruise missile and the Meteor and Mica air-to-air missile will also be displayed on the tableaux.
A 96-member marching contingent at the Parade will be led by Squadron Leader Prashant Swaminathan while the 72-member IAF band will be led by Flight Lieutenant Roop Chander.