Indian Air Force Day

The 90th anniversary of the Indian Air Force (IAF) was celebrated on October 8, 2022.

Key facts

  • This year, the celebration of the Indian Air Force Day is organized outside Delhi for the first time.
  • It is being organized in Chandigarh, with an hour-long air display of 80 aircraft over the Sukhna Lake.
  • During the event, a new combat uniform was unveiled and the creation of a new operational branch of the IAF called Weapon System Branch was announced.
  • The day commemorates the official induction of the IAF as the supporting force of the UK’s Royal Air Force in 1932.
  • The event involves the participation of Indian Air Force Chief and other senior officers.
  • The focus of this year’s celebration is “Atmanirbharata” or indigenization. Several Made-in-India platforms will be showcased during the event.
  • The recently inducted Prachand Light Combat Helicopters, light combat aircraft Tejas and radars like Arudhra and Aslesha featured in this event.
  • The event will also include the demonstration of high-speed dismantling and reassembly by mechanical transport team and the performance of air warrior drill team.

What is Weapon System Branch?

On the occasion of IAF Day, the Central Government approved the creation of the new operational branch of the IAF called Weapon System Branch. This is the first time since independence that a new operational branch has been created. Its creation would involve the integration of all weapon system operators in the IAF under one branch dedicated to the operation of all ground-based and specialist airborne weapon systems. It will bring together operators in four specialized streams of Surface-to-Air missiles, Surface-to-Surface missiles, Remotely Piloted Aircraft and Weapon System Operators in twin or multi-crew aircraft. The new branch will play a major role in boosting the Indian Air Force’s combat capabilities. It will help save over Rs.3,400 crore that is usually incurred as expenditure on flying training.

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