Jamnagar, Nov 12 (UNI) Two Hawk MK-132 Advanced Jet Trainer (AJT) aircraft, that departed from BAE System's Warton airfield in the United Kingdom, reached the Bidar Air Force Station in North Karnataka today.
Air Force sources here today said the two AJTs had landed here this afternoon for refuelling on their journey to Karnataka. They were flown by crew members from BAE Systems and IAF pilots.
Air Officer Commanding of Jamnagar R K Sharma and air warriors of the airbase gave a warm welcome to the crew on their maiden touch down on Indian soil. After reaching the Bidar AFS, the pilots would handover the aircraft documents to Air Marshal G S Chaudhary, signifying its induction into the IAF inventory, the sources said.
The two jets that arrived today were among the first lot of the 66 Hawk MK-132 aircraft purchased at a total cost of 80 billion pounds to be delivered to the IAF by BAE Systems. The completion of the delivery schedule will see all the 66 aircraft operational by 2010-11, sources said.
Out of the 66 aircraft, 24 are being developed, built and supplied by BAE Systems, while Hindustan Aeronatics Limited (HAL), Banglore will manufacture the remaining 42 aircraft under licence in India.