The newly inducted Rafale fighter aircraft has given us an edge and the capability to strike first and deep, Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria said today.

“Integration of Rafales brings in a platform which is way ahead and would give us an edge and capability to strike first and deep,” Bhadauria, the Indian Air Force (IAF) chief, was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.

Rafale fighter aircraft would feature in the Air Force Day parade on 8 October, an Indian Air Force (IAF) official said.

The Air Force Day is celebrated to mark the day the IAF was established in 1932. The force will celebrate its 88th anniversary this year with the annual parade at the Hindon airbase in Ghaziabad which includes air display of various aircraft.

“Along with other aircraft, the Rafale aircraft will also take part in the Air Force Day parade on October 8,” the IAF official said.

In a tweet, the IAF said, “#AFDay2020: Rafale – The Rafale is a 4.5 generation, twin-engine omnirole, air supremacy, interdiction, aerial reconnaissance, ground support, in-depth strike, anti-ship and nuclear deterrence fighter aircraft, equipped with a wide range of weapons.”

Five Rafale fighter jets were formally inducted into the IAF on September 10, in a major boost to India’s air power capability at a time when the country is engaged in a tense border standoff with China in eastern Ladakh.