Though IAF won the battle against aerial clash with Pakistani Air Force but criticism for fielding a generation older Mig-21 against technically much superior F-16 is not ending. All this is not going to be without the mention of homegrown Tejas fighter jet which is stationed deep down south India, far from the place of its requirement – The Pakistani Boarder.
When questioned about this, the Air Chief Marshal Dhanoa clarified that once the foundation for second squadron is done, first squadron of Tejas will be shifted to forward bases close to Pakistan border likely by 2020.
Flying Daggers No. 45 is the first squadron of Tejas Mk 1 which is based at Sulur Air Force station in Tamil Nadu. The squadron is yet to gain the full squadron strength which is likely to be by the end of this year. The squadron is currently carrying out initial user operational flying of LCA Tejas delivered to them and in the process is also training its engineering crew to carry out routine maintenance with help of HAL.
The formation of second squadron will start only after the fresh batch of FOC certified Tejas aircrafts starts arriving which will be after October this year only.
During FOC certification ceremony of LCA-Tejas, Dhanoa had said that LCA-Tejas behaves like a fighter aircraft and also act like one and air force has total confidence in the capabilities of the aircraft as recently demonstrated at the Iron fist Air exercise and now are flown regularly by the first Squadron in regular operating conditions.