On Wednesday, Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria flew a sortie in MiG-21 of 51 Squadron with two Mirage-2000s and Sukhoi-30MKI from Srinagar airbase to mark the completion of one year of Balakot airstrike.
The fateful Mi-17 helicopter was shot down by an Indian missile when Indian air defences were on high alert following the February 26 Balakot airstrike that targetted a terrorist camp in Pakistan. The helicopter crashed near Budgam, killing all six Indian Air Force personnel on board.
IAF jets struck at a JeM camp in Pakistan's Balakot on February 26 earlier this year, days after a terror attack on CRPF convoy in Jammu Kashmir's Pulwama which claimed the lives of around 40 CRPF personnel.
Air-warriors of IAF are getting ready for the ceremonial parade as part of celebrations at Air Force Station Hindan
A video showcasing the story of the Balakot airstrikes was played out before the start of the conference in which the important achievements of the IAF were showcased.
The first Rafale Aircraft to be inducted by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in France will also have the tail number RB-01 written on it in recognition of the role played by the officer in it.
The Indian Air Force will deploy one squadron each of the Rafale combat aircraft at its airbases in Ambala in Haryana and Hashimara in West Bengal.
Bhadauria, who is currently Vice Chief of Air Staff, will take over the charge as the Chief of Air Staff after his predecessor and the incumbent IAF Chief BS Dhanoa retires on September 30.