The Rafale fighter jets India ordered would not be ready to fly at the Bengaluru air show in February, an IAF official said on Sunday. French aerospace major Dassault Aviation is set to deliver 36 Rafales multi-role medium combat aircraft to the Indian Air Force (IAF) in fly-away condition from September 2019 onwards.
“Rafale for India will not be ready by February. We expect Dassault to fly some other Rafale at the Aero India show here on February 20-24, 2019.Deputy Chief of Air Staff Air Marshal R.K. Singh Bhadauria
This will be the 12th edition of the 5-day biennial air show. The air show will be held at IAF’s Yelahanka base on the city’s northern outskirts.
The state-run Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) will play a major role in organising the air show, instead of the Defence Exhibition Organisation which has been hosting the event over years, he added.
The advanced fourth generation fighter Rafale will partly replace the ageing Russian-built MiG-21 jets the IAF is phasing out due to their obsolescence. The current government’s bid to buy Rafale has been termed as ‘shady’ by the opposition. Some even term it as the ‘father of all scams’. All because government is not keeping it transparent and giving unfair advantage to Reliance, instead of state-run HAL which is quite experienced for the task.