VVIPs get their special jets

New Delhi Sept 20 | Updated: Sep 21 2005, 05:49am hrs
VVIP air travel has finally acquired the safety edge. The government on Tuesday formally inducted three Embraer business jets into the VVIP squadron of the Indian air force.

The 14-seater jets, imported from Brazil at around Rs 140 crore apiece, are also equipped with missile-deflecting systems. Besides this, the jets are also equipped with modern flight management system including global positioning system as well as category II instrument landing system which allows the aircraft to make landings in difficult weather. u

The government has ordered five such aircrafts, of which three were inducted in the IAF at a special ceremony by defence minister Pranab Mukherjee as well as Union home minister Shivraj Patil. One of the aircrafts will be at the disposal of the BSF.

What makes the Embraer efficient for VVIP duty is also its capability to take off within a distance of 1,800 metres as well as land on shorter strips of 1,400 m.

The government has also recently cleared a Rs 1,000 crore deal to acquire three long range Boeing business jets which will also be fitted with anti-missile shields.