Bengaluru: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh went on a 30-minute sortie in Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas in Bengaluru on Thursday.
Taking it to Twitter, Singh shared his experience calling it 'amazing and exhilarating'.
Flying on ‘Tejas’, an Indigenous Light Combat Aircraft from Bengaluru’s HAL Airport was an amazing and exhilarating experience.— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) September 19, 2019
Tejas is a multi-role fighter with several critical capabilities. It is meant to strengthen India’s air defence capabilities. pic.twitter.com/jT95afb0O7
Union Minister Rajnath Singh was seen in a G-suit on Thursday morning as he prepped himself up for flying in the indigenously-built light combat aircraft (LCA) Tejas from the HAL airport in Bengaluru.
He became the first defence minister to fly in the aircraft. Singh was accompanied by Air Vice Marshal N Tiwari, National Flight Test Centre, ADA (Aeronautical Development Agency) in Bengaluru.
Taking it to Twitter, Singh shared pictures of him in the G-suit and wrote, “All set for the day.”
The Union minister said this would also boost the morale of IAF pilots who are flying these aircraft. The minister was briefed by IAF officers before taking the sortie on Thursday.
The IAF has already inducted a batch of Tejas aircraft. The naval version of the LCA is in development stage.
Last Friday in Goa, Tejas had successfully carried out an "arrested landing", a key performance demonstrating its ability to land on board an aircraft carrier, making it a major milestone in development of the naval variant of the fighter jet.
"The minister will fly a sortie in the twin-seater version of Tejas on Thursday. He will be flying from HAL airport in Bengaluru," an official from the Defence Ministry had said on Tuesday.
Singh would also be attending an exhibition of products of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) in Bengaluru on Thursday, he had said.
Initially, the IAF had placed an order with the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for 40 Tejas aircraft. Last year, the IAF issued the request for proposal (RFP) to HAL for the procurement of another batch of 83 Tejas at a cost of over Rs 50,000 crore.