IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria flies the LCA Tejas fighter with 45 Squadron at Air Force Station in Sulur of Tamil Nadu
The Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria operationalise No. 18 Squadron 'Flying Bullets' of the Indian Air Force on Wednesday.
This event be conducted at Air Force Station, Sulur near Coimbatore. The Squadron will be equipped with LCA Tejas FOC Aircraft and will be the second IAF Squadron to fly LCA Tejas.
Eighteen Squadron was formed on April 15, 1965 with the motto 'Teevra aur Nirbhaya' meaning 'Swift and Fearless'. The Squadron was flying MiG 27 aircraft before it got number plated on April 15, 2016. The Squadron was resurrected on April 1 this year at Sulur.
IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria is on a visit to the Station for operationalisation of 18 Squadron. Photo: PTI
The Squadron actively participated in the 1971 War with Pakistan and was decorated with the highest gallantry award 'Param Vir Chakra' awarded to Flying Officer Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon posthumously.
It earned the sobriquet of 'Defenders of Kashmir Valley' by being the first to land and operate from Srinagar. The Squadron was presented with President's Standard in November 2015.
Tejas is an indigenous fourth generation tailless compound delta-wing aircraft. The aircraft is equipped with fly-by-wire flight control system, integrated digital avionics, multimode radar and its structure is made out of composite material.
It is the lightest and smallest in its group of fourth-generation supersonic combat aircraft.