BJP MP Tejasvi Surya flew on the indigenously built Tejas fighter during the Aero India airshow in Bengaluru on Thursday. Surya flew on a two-seat Tejas.
The first day of Aero India on Wednesday witnessed a milestone in indigenous defence projects as the government formally signed a contract to buy 83 Tejas Mk 1A jets, valued at Rs 48,000 crore.
The contract is the largest 'Make in India' deal to date and will give a boost to the Indian Air Force's depleting fleet strength.
Speaking to mediapersons, Tejasvi Surya said, "The LCA Tejas is a symbol of Atmanirbhar Bharat. It is a beacon of scientific excellence and capabilities of India. I am extremely delighted today that I got an opportunity to fly in this wonderful fighter jet. LCA Tejas is Bengaluru's gift to India."
Tejasvi Surya is a first-time MP from Bengaluru.
During the last edition of Aero India in February 2019, then Army chief General Bipin Rawat and badminton star P.V. Sindhu flew on the Tejas fighter. In September 2019, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh flew on the Tejas at Bengaluru.
Speaking at Aero India on Thursday, HAL CMD R. Madhavan said the company hopes to begin delivering Tejas Mk 1A jets to the Indian Air Force by March 2024. "In the first year, there will be delivery of 2 aircraft, which will be ramped up to 16. Total supply time, post first delivery is 6 years," Madhavan was quoted as saying by ANI.