In line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s initiatives to take major events and festivities out of the national capital region to different parts of the country, the Indian Air Force has decided to celebrate this year’s annual Air Force Day parade and flypast in Chandigarh instead of the Hindan Air Base in Delhi NCR, where it was being held for past many years.
“This year, the Indian Air Force has decided that the major Air Force Day festivities on October 8 like the flypast and parade would be held in Chandigarh. The idea is that more and more people should watch the air show and people from all parts of the country should see what their Air Force is and know its capabilities,” senior government officials told ANI. The IAF chief Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari has also issued instructions that the force must involve the maximum possible people in the celebrations.
The flypast is being planned to be held over the famous Sukhna lake in the city where a large number of people, from not just Chandigarh but adjoining cities, can come and witness the combat aircraft such as the Rafale, Su-30 and Mirage 2000 fly along with the aerobatic display teams like the Suryakirans and the Sarang perform.
The IAF leadership also felt that the flypast should not be confined to the air base in Chandigarh as only a limited number of people would be able to view it due to restrictions inside the military bases, the officials said.
In the last eight years, the Prime Minister has started hosting foreign dignitaries in different cities like Ahmedabad and Chennai while many events like the military exhibition Defexpo are being held in different states.
As per the plans, from now on, the IAF would also celebrate Air Force Day in different parts of the country.
“Almost the same set of people witness the parade every year at the Hindan Air Base and shifting it to places outside the national capital region would ensure more number of youth see the Air Force in action and get inspired to join it,” the officials said.
For many decades, the Indian Air Force used to hold the parade and flypast at the Palam Air Base but shifted it to the Hindan Air Base in 2006.
The Indian Air Force is also taking the Agnipath recruitment scheme to different corners of the country as IAF officials are meeting with students in different cities to explain the scheme to them.
IAF Chief VR Chaudhari has also visited multiple air bases to educate and inform the men in his force about the scheme so that they can further guide the aspirants to join the force. He has till now covered more than 20 bases of the force in this regard.