Largest flypast with 75 aircraft on Republic Day this year
New Delhi: The Republic Day parade at the Rajpath this year will see the “grandest and largest” flypast ever with the participation of 75 aircraft to mark the Azadi ka Amrut Mahotsav celebrations, an IAF official said on Monday.
The flypast will conclude with seven jaguar fighter aircraft flying in the ‘Amrit’ formation to commemorate the 75 years of Independence.
“The flypast this year will be the grandest and largest with 75 aircraft from IAF, Army and Navy flying during the Republic Day parade. This is in line with the Azadi ka Amrut Mahotsav celebrations,” IAF PRO Wing Commander Indranil Nandi said at a press briefing.
“The flypast will include Tangail formation which will have one Dakota and two Dornier flying in Vic formation. This is a tribute to the Tangail airdrop operations of the 1971 War. There will also be Meghna formation of 1 Chinook and four Mi-17s,” he said.
The flypast will begin with the ‘Dhwaj’ formation with four Mi-17 aircraft, followed by ‘Rudra’ and ‘Rahat’ formations with four and five Advanced Light Helicopters (ALH), respectively.
Among the other aircraft that will display their might at the parade are Rafale, Indian Navy’s MiG29K, P-8I surveillance aircraft and Jaguar fighter jets.
The Indian Air force also unveiled its tableau for the Republic Day celebrations, with assets like Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) armed with AT Dhruvastra missile, Ashlesha Mk1 radar, Gnat, Rafale, MIG 21 on display.
Given the COVID-19 situation in the national capital, approximately 24,000 people will be permitted to attend the Republic Day parade on January 26 this year.
In 2020, before the pandemic struck India, around 1.25 lakh people were permitted to attend the parade, they noted.
Last year’s Republic Day parade took place amid the pandemic and close to 25,000 people were allowed to attend it, sources mentioned.