Known for its role in the 1999 Kargil war with Pakistan, the MiG 27 swing-wing fighter aircraft has been the backbone of the ground attack fleet of the Indian Air Force for the past four decades. The official spokesperson said that the upgraded variant of this last swing-wing fleet has been the pride of the Indian Air Forces strike fleet since 2006.
“MiG 27 swing-wing fighter aircraft has been the backbone of ground attack fleet of Indian Air Force for the past four decades. All the other variants, such as MiG-23 BN and MiG-23 MF and the pure MiG 27 have already retired from Indian Air Force”, the spokesperson added.
He further said that these aircraft have made an immense contribution to the nation, both during peace and war and that the fleet also took an active part in Operation Parakram, when Indian and Pakistan armies were at an eyeball to eyeball contact following the attack on the Indian Parliament.
“The fleet earned its glory in the historic Kargil conflict when it delivered rockets and bombs with accuracy on enemy positions”, he said.
The upgraded version, because of its survivability has also participated in numerous national and international exercises. Presently, Number 29 Squadron is the only unit in the Indian Air Force which has been operating MiG 27 Upgrades.
“Number 29 Squadron was raised on 10 March 1958 at Air Force Station Halwara with Ouragan (Toofani) aircraft. Over the years, the Squadron has been equipped with numerous types of fighter aircraft such as MiG 21 Type 77, MiG 21 Type 96, MiG 27 ML, and MiG 27 Upgrade”, he said.
The Squadron is now slated to be number plated on 31 Mar 2020 with 27 Dec 19 being its last flying day thereby making the swing-wing fleet a part of IAF's glorious past.
“Various functions have been planned towards the de-induction ceremony at Air Force Station Jodhpur. Veteran air warriors along with serving air warriors in large numbers are taking part in the ceremony. Air Marshal SK Ghotia VSM, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief South Western Air Command would be presiding over the wind-down ceremony”, added the spokesperson