New Delhi: Defence Minister Rajnath Singh on Monday inaugurated the Bharat Drone Shakti – 2023 event and formally inducted the C-295 transport aircraft into the Indian Air Force at the Hindan airbase in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad,
India has signed a deal to acquire 56 Airbus C-295 aircraft to replace the Indian Air Force’s ageing Avro transport fleet. While the first 16 of these aircraft to be delivered to the IAF will be manufactured at the Airbus facility in Spain, the remaining 40 will be produced at Vadodara in India as part of a joint venture between Airbus and the Tata Group.
Meanwhile, the two-day Bharat Drone Shakti that was inaugurated on Monday presented the capabilities of the Indian drone industry at full capacity and will hold over 50 live aerial demonstrations. It will showcase survey drones, agriculture drones, fire suppression drones, and tactical surveillance drones. More than 75 drone startups and corporates are participating in the event.
The Bharat Drone Shakti event is being attended by representatives from the Central government, state departments, public and private industries, armed forces, paramilitary forces, and representatives from friendly countries.
Features of C-295 Aircraft
The first C-295 medium tactical transport aircraft landed in Vadodara last week, days after it was handed over to the IAF in the southern Spanish city of Seville.
The C-295 has the advantage of being able to take off from short, unpaved and rough airstrips which is suited for military operations.
The aircraft can attain a maximum speed of 260 knots and has the capacity to carry a substantial load, ranging from 5 to 10 tonnes which will boost the airlift capacity of the IAF.
Another key advantage of the C-295 is its suitability for low-level flight characteristics, particularly designed for tactical missions
The plane is fitted with a retractable landing gear and features an unobstructed 12.69-meter-long pressurised cabin. The C-295 cruises at altitudes up to 30,000 ft.
It is capable of a very long endurance flight of up to 13 hours.
Air Chief Marshal V.R. Chaudhari had on September 13 received the first of the 56 C-295 transport aircraft, two years after India sealed a Rs 21,935 crore deal with Airbus Defence and Space to buy the jets.