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Parliamentary standing committee on Defence (SCOD) in its report has informed Parliament that Indian Air Force (IAF) is short of Trainer aircraft against sanctioned strength of 388 with only 260 Trainer aircraft.

Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) developed IJT-36 subsonic intermediate jet trainer aircraft that was to replace the ageing Kiran MkII Trainer aircraft under Stage-II Trainer Program is seen as the biggest factor IAF doesn’t have fully sanctioned strength due to years of delays in the program.

IAF recently placed orders for 70 HTT-40 Basic Trainer Aircraft and is looking to procure more 36 in the second batch that was to be procured for PC-7 Mk2 Trainer that now has been scrapped. IAF also had plans to procure 20 more Bae Hawk Mk132 AJTS but had to be scrapped due to high cost but HAL is willing to reopen the production facility if required.

HAL proposed the development of the Hindustan Lead-in Fighter Trainer (HLFT-42) recently to provide next-gen trainer aircraft for pilots that will be flying 4.5gen fighter jets like Tejas Mk2 and 5th Gen AMCA fighter jets that will not have Trainer Conversion fighter jets.

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