India’s indigenous light combat aircraft, Tejas has flown into foreign airspace for the first time.
Tejas aircraft reached Sakhir Airbase, Bahrain Sunday and will later take part in Airshow commencing on January 21.
“History created - for first time LCA-Tejas flies into foreign airspace to participate in Bahrain Air Show,” Indian MoD Spokesperson tweeted.
Tejas would fly at an air show overseas exactly a year after its entry into the fleet of the IAF. The jet’s performance would be analysed by aerospace professionals from across the world.
The fighter jet could make its debut in subsequent air shows at other venues across the world in order to enhance its export potential.
The decision comes at a time when India’s Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar said that defence equipment could be exported to countries which cannot afford the most expensive ones. Tejas, which has completed more than 3,000 sorties, was originally meant to replace MiG 21 fleet of IAF, but could be an inexpensive yet advanced alternative for ageing fighter jets in several countries, sources said, adding that with certain European aerospace companies offering to co-produce Tejas, these aircraft could even be acquired by some European countries.
Sources said top technocrats of MoD and HAL would attend the air show to answer queries about the cost of these jets and delivery schedule.