Indian Air Force Welcomes Its Newest Transport Aircraft, the C-295.

Indian Air Force Welcomes Its Newest Transport Aircraft, the C-295.
Indian Air Force Welcomes Its Newest Transport Aircraft, the C-295.
Indian Air Force Welcomes Its Newest Transport Aircraft, the C-295.
Indian Air Force Welcomes Its Newest Transport Aircraft, the C-295.

Indian Air Force Welcomes Its Newest Transport Aircraft, the C-295.

Indian Air Force Welcomes Its Newest Transport Aircraft, the C-295. Pic/ANI.

Historic Landing in Vadodara Air Base

The Indian Air Force’s (IAF) highly anticipated C-295 transport aircraft has made a historic landing at the Vadodara air base in Gujarat. This momentous event comes just a week after Airbus Defence and Space officially handed over the aircraft to the IAF in Seville, Spain. The ceremony was graced by the presence of IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari, who took delivery of this cutting-edge aircraft, marking a significant milestone in India’s ambitious ₹21,935-crore Make in India project aimed at modernizing the IAF’s transport fleet.

Joint IAF-Airbus Crew Takes Flight

The transport of the C-295 from Seville to Vadodara was executed flawlessly by a joint IAF-Airbus crew. This aircraft is poised to become the centerpiece of the upcoming Air Force Day parade and will play a pivotal role as the IAF raises its first squadron of tactical airlifters in Vadodara.Enhancing Logistics Capabilities for Forward MissionsThe C-295 is expected to revolutionize the IAF’s logistics capabilities, particularly in meeting mission requirements in forward areas, including those near the contested border with China. This technological marvel will replace the aging Avro transport aircraft, which entered service in the early 1960s.

Strategic Induction and Expansion Plans

The official induction of the first C-295 into the IAF’s fleet is scheduled for September 25 at the Hindan air base. Notably, this aircraft is likely to participate in this year’s Air Force Day parade, set to take place in Prayagraj, Uttar Pradesh, on October 8, marking the IAF’s 91st anniversary. The IAF’s strategy also includes raising its first squadron in Vadodara, aligning with the desire to base the initial aircraft close to the C-295 production facility. Each C-295 squadron is expected to comprise 10 to 12 aircraft.

A Collaborative Effort for Self-Reliance

The journey of the C-295 began two years ago when the Indian defense ministry signed a contract with Airbus for a total of 56 aircraft, aiming to enhance self-reliance in the defense manufacturing sector. Tata Advanced Systems Limited and Airbus have joined forces to execute this monumental program. Of these 56 aircraft, Airbus will deliver 16 in flyaway condition, while the remaining units will be assembled in India at the Tata facility in Vadodara. The IAF’s second C-295 is already in its final assembly stage in Seville and is expected to be delivered in May 2024. The entire fleet of 16 flyaway aircraft will be handed over to the IAF by August 2025, while the first “made in India” C-295 will roll out of the Vadodara facility in September 2026, with the remaining 39 scheduled for completion by August 2031.

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