The Indian Air Force celebrated its 84th anniversary on Saturday at the Hindon Air Base in Ghaziabad with a large parade and an air display.
The air display commenced with flag bearing sky divers of famous AKASH GANGA Team dropping out of AN-32 aircraft in their colourful canopies.
The flypast included the vintage aircraft, modern transport aircraft and frontline fighter aircraft.
The ceremony concluded with a scintillating aerobatic display.
For the first time, India's indigenous Light Combat Aircraft performed stunts at the air show, amid loud cheers from the audience.
Earlier, Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his tweet saluted all the Air Force personnel by saying, ‘Saluting all air warriors & their families on Air Force Day. Thank you for protecting our skies. Your courage makes India proud.’
President Pranab Mukherjee also greeted the IAF on its anniversary and said in a message that the nation is proud of the capability and competency of the IAF as over the last eight decades, it has emerged as an immensely professional and combat-ready force.
In his customary address at the celebrations, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha said that the terror attack in Pathankot and Uri are a stark reminder of the times we live in, and added, that the Indian Air Force is ready to counter such attacks in the future.
“The terrorist attack on Pathankot airbase and Uri Army base are a stark reminder of the times we live in. To counter any sub-covenantal threat to our bases, we have instituted various new security measures,” said Air Chief Marshal Raha said.
He said various courses are being conducted, that have increased security training, consciousness, physical fitness and combat efficiency of air warriors to handle such situations more efficiently.
He further said that the IAF has achieved distinction in defending.
The Air Force chief said, “Armed forces are well prepared to take on any sub-conventional threats. We have had one or two cases and a determined terrorist can always get the better people, but aim is to prevent it.”
“A deterrence to prevent any such intrusion, any such attack right in the beginning and so that we can neutralise them, so that they cannot actually cause any damage to armed forces property, armed forces people or our own people inside our whole nation,” he added.
Raha further said that IAF is becoming smarter saying that, “We are learning lessons every time something happens and I think we are very well prepared now to face any such contingency,” he added.
The Air Force Day is celebrated to commemorate the day the force was officially established, October 8, 1932.