9:19 am - Monday December 11, 2017

MiG-21 FL flies into air force history

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MiG-21 FL flies into air force history
MiG-21 FL flies into air force history

Kalaikunda (West Bengal) – Two pairs of MiG-21 FLs – India’s first supersonic jet – took off with a deafening roar from the runway of the Kalaikunda air base here at 9.45 a.m. for one last time Wednesday, and flew into the history of the Indian Air Force after 50 years of long association.

The iconic jet that has be! en flown by nearly three out of every four fighter pilots since its inc! eption in 1963, made its final pass in a four-aircraft box formation over the tarmac area.

A separate formation by three MiG-27 MLs roared over saluting the MiG-21s (Type-77) as Air Chief Marshal N.A.K. Browne reviewed the parade on the ground commanded by Group Captain V.P. Singh, commander of the Operational Conversion Unit (OCU).

A MiG-21 FL bearing tail number c-1125 was towed out of the parade square to the tune of ‘Auld Lang Syne’, as wing walkers marched alongside.

Flight-Lieutenant L. Nagarajan, the youngest OCU pilot, handed over the Form 700 – the document log of an aircraft – of the MiG -21 to Browne, symbolising the curtains for the fighter aircraft.

Browne in his address called it a watershed moment in the IAF’s history.

“Today’s event marks a watershed moment in IAF’s history as we reach the end of nearly five decades of remarkable operational service rendered by this iconic fighter.”

Browne also released a coffee-t! able book and a commemorative postal stamp to mark the occasion.

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