After nearly 33-years of active service, the Indian Navy on Wednesday decommissioned Sea Harriers aircraft, while simultaneously inducting (Russian) MIG 29K fighter aircraft on Wednesday.
Onboard INS Hansa docked at Vasco – Admiral R K Dhowan, who witnessed the acrobatic maneuvers of the aircraft, commended its service and hailed its role in the maritime security. “Being one of the toughest known machines in air, we had some of the finest set of pilots flying them – the Sea Harriers,” he said.
However, Dhowan suggested that given the new threats and challenges in air, the multi role supersonic MiG 29K gave the Indian Navy an upper hand in aerial defence.
Holding that the Navy held safety of both its manpower and machines at prime importance, Dhowan said Navy was taking corrective recourse such as detailed analysis of air accidents in the past, ensuring that its personnel strictly adhered to the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) to avoid untoward incidents.
In its immediate future, Dhowan said that the Navy was looking at induction of Naval Utility Helicopters and Medium Range Maritime Reconnaissance aircrafts.