Indian Air Force inducted the No. 222 squadron Tigersharks on January 20, 2020 at Air Force Station Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu. The squadron was inducted in the presence of General Bipin Rawat, PVSM UYSM AVSM YSM SM VSM ADC, the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria, PVSM AVSM VM ADC, Chief of the Air Staff, Dr G Satheesh Reddy, Secretary, Department of Defence R&D and Chairman, DRDO, Air Marshal Amit Tiwari AVSM VM, Air Officer Commanding – in – Chief (AOC-in-C), Southern Air Command (SAC), Vice Admiral Atul Kumar Jain AVSM VSM, Flag Officer Commanding – in – Chief (FOC-in-C), Eastern Naval Command (ENC), Mr R Madhavan, Chairman cum Managing Director, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited and other Dignitaries.
The squadron has a fleet of the Sukhoi SU-30MKI which will be fitted with the efficiently Made in India BrahMos missile. “The combination of the Sukhoi SU-30MKI along with the BrahMos missile will be a game changer”, said General Bipin Rawat. This squadron will be working closely with the Indian Army and Indian Navy from time to time for carrying out joint operations.
The ‘Tiger Sharks‘ are the IAF’s 12th Su-30MKI squadron overall and only the service’s second fighter squadron based in southern India: the other is the No. 45 ‘Flying Daggers‘ Squadron at Sulur AFS, 250 km west of Thanjavur, which operates the locally developed and built Tejas Light Combat Aircraft (LCA). – Source Janes.com
Senior Indian Air Force officer said No. 222 Squadron is expected to be equipped with its full complement of 18 licence-built Sukhoi SU-30MKIs by early 2021. Eight of these aircraft are set to be armed with the 2.5 tonne, air-launched BrahMos-A missile, which has a 292 km range.
The induction ceremony culminated with a flying display by Light Combat Aircraft, Sarang Helicopter Display Team and Surya Kiran Aerobatic Team (SKAT).
Featured Image Information: Sukhoi SU-30MKI with Brahmos Missile at Aero India 2019