PM Modi completes sortie in Tejas trainer aircraft, first PM to fly in LCA

In the bustling city of Bengaluru, a historic event unfolded. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a daring display of confidence in India’s indigenous capabilities, took to the skies in the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas’ trainer variant. This flight marked him as the first PM to fly in the Tejas, a symbol of national pride and technological prowess.

The PM’s experience was not just a flight, but a journey that significantly bolstered his confidence in our country’s indigenous capabilities. It left him with a renewed sense of pride and optimism about our national potential.

During his visit, the PM also took a tour of the Tejas hangar at the Defence PSU Hindustan Aeronautics Limited’s (HAL) Bangalore Complex. He appreciated the efforts of the PSU and its team, acknowledging the hard work and dedication that went into the creation of the Tejas.

The Tejas is not just any aircraft. It’s a homegrown marvel, designed and developed by the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA), a Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) lab in Bengaluru, and manufactured by HAL.

So far, HAL has received orders for 40 LCA-Mk1, seven of which are to be trainer aircraft. The PSU has already delivered 33 single-seat fighters, and the first of the twin-seat trainer variants was handed over to the Indian Air Force (IAF) in October this year. It has to deliver six more trainers and 83 LCA-Mk1A variant aircraft, for which orders worth Rs 8,802 crore have been placed already.

The Tejas twin-seater is a lightweight, all-weather multi-role 4.5 generation aircraft. It’s designed to support the training requirements of the IAF and can augment itself to the role of a fighter in case of necessity. It’s an amalgamation of contemporary concepts and technologies such as relaxed static-stability, quadraplex fly-by-wire flight control, carefree manoeuvring, advanced glass cockpit, integrated digital avionics systems, and advanced composite materials for the airframe.

With the production of the LCA twin-seater variant, India joins the list of very few elite countries who have created such a capability and have them operational in their defence forces.

The Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari, has said that the IAF would be going forward to procure 97 more LCAs. With this, it will have 220 LCAs in its inventory. The defence minister, Rajnath Singh-led defence acquisition council, is likely to take up the ‘acceptance of necessity’ (AON) for 97 more LCA-Mk1A aircraft.

This is a story of national pride, of technological advancement, and of a vision for a self-reliant India. It’s a story that fills every Indian heart with pride and optimism for the future. 🇮🇳

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