For the last time MiG-23/MiG-27 class variable-sweep (Swing Wing) of the Russian origin will take to the Indian sky for the last time on Friday from the Jodhpur Air Base. The last squadron has seven aircraft which will fly out the last time, South West Air Command (SWAC). The aircraft which has been in the Indian Air Force (IAF) for four long decades proved to be “ace attacker” during the 1999 Kargil war and has earned the nickname of ‘Bahadur’ from pilots.
What does it mean?
It means that the seven aircraft after their final sorties will be decommissioned from the service and will never fly again, explained a senior IAF officer.
The MiG-27 squadron based in Jodhpur SWAC is the only one left in the country and once decommissioned will become part of the IAF’s history and also globally.
In the present time no Air Force operates the Russian origin aircraft.
While there is no clarity what exactly will happen with these aircraft from tomorrow, according to officials, typically these aircraft end up either being used as souvenirs, or could be given to another country or just return to the base depot.
SWAC Jodhpur has been home to two squadrons of MiG 27. One of them was decommissioned earlier this year.
The one which is being decommissioned tomorrow is known as Scorpion 29 Squadron and has seven upgraded MiG 27.
Two squadrons of MiG 27 have already been decommissioned from Hashimara Airbase, West Bengal.
What to expect tomorrow?
There will be a ceremonial adieu given to the “lethal fighter jet ” of the IAF, Jodhpur, SWAC, where all the pilots who have flown these fighter machines will gather at the base and will fly the last sortie in various formations.
And the ceremony will conclude with a salute after the aircraft land.