Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday inaugurated the 14th edition of India’s largest aerospace and defense exhibition, Aero India at the Air Force Station in Yelahanka, Bengaluru.
The five-day event at Yelahanka Air Force Station, with the theme ‘The runway to a billion opportunities’ began with Indian Air Force Chief Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari leading the Gurukul formation during the flypast.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that Aero India reflects India’s new strength and aspirations. He added the made-in-India Tejas aircraft and INS Vikrant as examples of India’s potential.
“Today, India is not just a market for defence companies in the world. India is a potential defence partner today. This partnership is even with those nations that are much ahead in the defence sector, nations that are looking for a dependable partner for their defence requirements,” he added further.
The Prime Minister also highlighted the importance of Aero India taking place in Karnataka which is the hub of India’s technological advancement. Aero India 2023 will serve as a platform for ‘Made in India’ weapons, with the LCH Prachand leading the way. DRDO developed Medium Altitude Long Endurance class unmanned aerial vehicle TAPAS-BH (Tactical Aerial Platform for Advanced Surveillance – Beyond Horizon) made its flying debut at Aero India. The event also aims to promote export of indigenous air platforms like Light Combat Aircraft (LCA)-Tejas, HTT-40, Dornier Light Utility Helicopter (LUH), Light Combat Helicopter (LCH) and Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH).
United States Charge d’Affaires Ambassador to India Elizabeth Jones is leading the largest-ever US delegation to the biennial air show. The US will unveil its fifth-generation fighters, the stealthy and supersonic F-35A Lightning II and F-35A Joint Strike Fighter.
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) is displaying a scaled model Hindustan Lead in Fighter Trainer (HLFT)-42 at the show this year. The trainer could play a critical role in modern combat aircraft training of the Indian Air Force (IAF). The show will also feature models of the air-launched version of the BrahMos supersonic missile along with the BrahMos NG missile. It has a flight range of up to 290 km with supersonic speed all through the light, ensuring lower dispersion of targets, quicker engagement time and non-interception by any known weapon system in the world.
More than 700 exhibitors from India and the world are participating this year which has broken all the past records. 251 agreements with expected investments of ₹ 75,000 crore are likely to be signed between various Indian and foreign defence companies. Scaled models of the Tejas MK-2 and the Fifth Generation Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft are also being featured at the Bengaluru exhibition.
Taking to Twitter, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today shared glimpses of the Aero India 2023 event. “Aero India is a wonderful platform to showcase the unlimited potential our country has in defence and aerospace sectors,” his tweet read.