The Indian Air Force (IAF) is set to get the first four Rafale fighter jets from France by July-end this year, news agency ANI reported quoting its sources.
These fighter jets were supposed to arrive by May-end but the handing over got delayed because of Covid-19 pandemic.
The first four aircraft including three twin-seater trainer aircraft and one single-seater fighter aircraft would start arriving by the end of July at the Ambala airbase.
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On their way to India, these fighter jets would be refuelled by a French Air Force tanker aircraft in the air before they make a stopover in the Middle East. After their take-off from the Middle East, another round of mid-air refuelling will be done by the Indian IL-78 tanker.
These fighter jets could have landed directly in India after taking off from France but a stopover was arranged for in the Middle East as a 10-hour flight could have been stressful for the pilots sitting inside a small cockpit.