(Kajal Singh, Intern journalist): The 18th Squadron of the Air Force will now be equipped with the light combat aircraft Tejas. It has become the second squadron of the Airforce to fly Tejas aircraft.

The Indian Air Force today received a new and second squadron of Tejas fighter jets. Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria, the Chief of the Air Force assigned to the 18th Squadron of the Air Force at Sulur Airbase in Tamil Nadu. Indian Air Force Chief Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria flew the Light Combat Aircraft Tejas fighter aircraft with the 45th Squadron at Air Force Station Sulur today. He flew in the single-seater combat aircraft Tejas.

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The 18th Squadron of the Air Force will now be equipped with Light Combat Aircraft Tejas. This will be the second squadron of the Air Force to fly Tejas aircraft, 45th Squadron has done so before.

The squadron, formed on 15 April 1965, was flying MiG-27 aircraft with its motto ‘Tevra Aur Nirbhaya’ which means ‘swift and fearless’. Earlier it was put on the number plate on 15 April 2016. The squadron has been resumed on April 1 this year.

The squadron actively participated in the 1971 war with Pakistan and posthumously Flying Officer Nirmal Jeet Singh Sekhon was awarded the Param Vir Chakra, the highest gallantry award. This squadron was also called the ‘Defenders of Kashmir Valley’ for first landing in Srinagar and working there. The squadron of the Airforce was presented in November 2015 with the President’s Standard.

Tejas is an indigenous fourth generation tailless compound delta-wing aircraft. It is equipped with a fly-by-wire flight control system, integrated digital avionics, multimode radar, and its structure is made up of composite material. Tejas is the lightest and smallest of the group of fourth-generation supersonic fighter aircraft. Recently the naval version of Tejas, a light combat aircraft manufactured in the country, successfully flew from the ‘ski-jump’ deck of the aircraft carrier INS Vikramaditya.

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