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India boost its defense capabilities as Hindustan Aeronautics delivers 1st Tejas twin seater aircraft to Air Force

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) CMD CB Ananthakrishnan handed over the LCA Tejas twin-seater trainer aircraft to Indian Air Force Chief Air Chief Marshal VR Choudhary in Bengaluru. The LCA Tejas twin seater is a light weight, all weather multi-role 4.5 generation aircraft.

By Ruchi Upadhyay 
Updated Date

Bengaluru: After a long wait of 32 years, Indian Air Force (IAF) chief Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari received the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) Tejas twin-seater trainer aircraft from Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) Chief Managing Director CB Ananthakrishnan in Bengaluru on Wednesday.

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The Bangalore headquartered company said that this twin-seater aircraft has all the capabilities to meet the training requirements of the Indian Air Force (IAF) and extend itself to the role of fighter as well in case of necessity.

Union Minister of State for Defence Ajay Bhatt was the chief guest during the ceremony, which saw the unveiling of the LCA Twin Seater, handing over of Release to Service (RSD), Signaling Out Certificate (SOC) were conducted in the presence of the Air Chief Marshal VR Choudhary and others.

The LCA Tejas is a lightweight two-seater. Another specialty of this is that no matter what the weather is, good or bad, it will be able to work in every situation. In this case, it is a 4.5 generation aircraft capable of working in all weather conditions.

It is one of the three product models of HAL Tejas along with Tejas Mark 1 and Mark 1A fighter aircraft. The length of the aircraft is 13.2 meters, width is 8.2 meters and height is 4.4 meters. The aircraft has a maximum speed of Mach 1.6 and can reach an altitude of 50,000 feet. It has nine hard points for weapons.

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The induction of the trainer version of Tejas into the Indian Air Force is an important achievement. India has been working for many years to upgrade this version. The Tejas trainer will be used to train Indian Air Force pilots.

This will help in the process of developing indigenous capabilities in the aviation industry. This aircraft will provide Indian pilots with the experience required to operate modern fighter aircraft and will also be used to train future pilots for other Indian fighter aircraft.

HAL said that this is an initiative towards self-reliant India. This adds India to the list of “very few” elite countries who have created such capabilities and have them operational in their Defence Forces. Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL), the manufacturer of Tejas, has described it as a milestone. This LCA trainer has been named LT-5201. Whereas it is also called Lead-in Fighter Trainer i.e. LiFT.

HAL has already received 18 orders for LCA trainers, eight of which are to be delivered to the Air Force between 2023 and 2024. The remaining 10 aircraft will be delivered in 2026 and 2027. Further, more orders are also expected from IAF, the company said.

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