India’s indigenous supersonic fighter HAL-Tejas recently participated in aerial displays during the five-day Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition (LIMA) in Malaysia. The Indian Air Force (IAF) team departed from Air Force Station Kalaikunda for Langkawi on March 22 via Myanmar, Yangon. The IAF also posted pictures and a video of the HAL-Tejas aircraft practicing. The Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Bin Mohamad & the Defence Minister of Malaysia, Mohamad Sabu also visited the Tejas aircraft & interacted with team IAF.
The Langkawi International Maritime Aero Expo (LIMA-2019) is planned in Langkawi, Malaysia from March 26 to March 30, which will provide an opportunity to the IAF air-warriors to interact with their Royal Malaysian Air Force (RMAF) counterparts and foster close relationship between the two services. This will serve as a foundation for any future interaction with the Malaysian Air Force.
The HAL Tejas, which received its final operational clearance earlier this year, is a possible contender for Malaysia’s light fighter jet procurement project. The Indian jet is in competition against the Chinese-Pakistani JF-17, South Korean F-50 and Russian YAK-130. With an initial purchase of 12 units, Malaysia is also looking to have an option for additional 24 units in the future.
The HAL Tejas is an Indian single-engine, multirole light fighter designed by the Aeronautical Development Agency (ADA) and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) for the Indian Air Force and Indian Navy. It came from the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) programme, which began in the 1980s to replace India’s ageing MiG-21 fighters. In 2003, the LCA was officially named “Tejas”. Tejas has a tail-less compound delta-wing configuration with a single dorsal fin. It is the smallest and lightest in its class of contemporary supersonic combat aircraft.