Flying Daggers: India Inducts Tejas Fighter Jets Into Air Force (VIDEO)

© AP Photo / Aijaz RahiTejas, an Indian Air Force light combat aircraft (File)
Tejas, an Indian Air Force light combat aircraft (File) - Sputnik International
Two Indian-made HAL Tejas multirole light fighter jets have joined the Indian Air Force (IAF), the Indian military said Friday.

NEW DELHI (Sputnik) — In May, the plane's manufacturer, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), said that the IAF Chief Marshal Arup Raha had carried out a test flight of Tejas, becoming the first IAF head to test the fighter.

"Air Marshal Jasbir Walia, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Southern Air Command, inducted the LCA [Light Combat Aircraft] ‘Tejas’ at Indian Air Force’s Aircraft Systems and Test Establishment in Bengaluru," the Indian Air Force said in a statement.

Tejas has become part of the IAF's new Flying Daggers squadron. The squadron will get 18 more Tejas aircraft in 2018.

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The jet is equipped with Israeli Elta 2032 multi-mode radars, Derby air-to-air missiles and modern laser designator and targeting pods.

The IAF will replace its aging MiG squadrons with Tejas by 2022.

The Tejas project began in 1985 and the aircraft was initially planned to join the Air Force in 1994. The project was later delayed and first took to the skies in 2001, but was not used by IAF pilots.

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