Vintage military aircraft Dakota reaches Jamnagar IAF station


A fully refurbished Dakota DC3l, a World War II-era vintage military transport aircraft, landed at the Air Force station in Jamnagar in Gujarat today.
The aircraft will fly to the Air Force Station at Hindan in Ghaziabad in Uttar Pradesh tomorrow for induction into the Vintage Aircraft Fleet of the IAF formed in 2012, a Defence release said here.
Dakotas had played a crucial role in the 1947-48 Indo-Pak war, especially in ferrying the Indian troops to Srinagar.
The aircraft commenced its flight from Coventry in the United Kingdom on April 17 and reached IAF station Jamnagar today where it was received in the presence of Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Air Marshal R K Dhir, Air Officer Commanding (South Western Air Command) Sanjai Chauhan, among others, the defence release said.
The aircraft has been gifted to the IAF by Chandrasekhar, whose father, Air Commodore M K Chandrasekhar was a Dakota pilot in the IAF.
"Post completion of custom formalities, the aircraft is planned to ferry from Jamnagar to Hindan Air Force Station on April 26, for its induction into the Vintage Aircraft Fleet of the IAF formed in 2012," the release stated.

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During the first Indo-Pak war (in 1947-48), besides carrying supplies and refugees, Dakota aircraft carried the troops of 1st Sikh Regiment to Srinagar on October 27, 1947 to intervene in time to save the Kashmir valley and Poonch from Pakistan, the release stated.
A large fleet of Dakota DC-3 served in the IAF till 1988. It was one of the most versatile transport aircraft of its time.
The aircraft was obtained from scrap in 2011 and was restored to flying condition in the UK by Chandrasekhar for gifting it to the IAF.
The induction ceremony is scheduled to take place on May 4 at Air Force Station Hindan.

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First Published: Apr 25 2018 | 8:50 PM IST

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