INDIA. Mumbai: On Saturday, the ‘Air Fest 2022’ commenced with a visually stunning and breathtaking perfomances by aircrafts. The Air Fest sets off to a flying start at Headquarters in Vayusena Nagar, Nagpur. It featured a stunning exhibition of cooperation between the majestic air warriors and their flying equipment.
An official statement read that the Air Fest was held as a part of the “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav,” a government of India programme to commemorate the 75th anniversary of Indian Independence and the glorious history of our people, culture, and accomplishments.
Air Fest 2022 Goals and Motives
The goal of the Air Fest was to highlight various aspects of the Indian Air Force (IAF) and to inspire the nation’s youngsters to join the Indian Air Force as a profession. The Chief Guest for the Air Fest 2022 was Air Marshal Vibhas Pande, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Maintenance Command.
The 14 National Cadet Corps (NCC) Air Wing cadets who opened the Air Fest flew both remote-controlled and control line models in full view of the audience to show off their aeromodelling prowess. Air Fest was brimming with the control line model performed inverted flying, loops, and vertical figure eights. The remote-controlled aircraft performed an aerobatic demonstration that included loops, rolls, and figure eights.
After that, an aerobatic performance by a paramotor pilot, comprising a spiral fall from 1,000 feet and a “wingover” at the height of 300 feet, captivated the spectators. Six airmen from the IAF’s “Akashganga” unit gave an impressive performance of skydiving from a Dornier aeroplane at an altitude of 8,000 feet before landing precisely in the chosen landing zone.
The leader carried the AF Ensign, which was followed by the second para jumper landing with the “Akashganaa” flag, and the demonstration culminated with three of the team members landing with the Tricolour.
An Avro aircraft, a medium-sized turboprop transport aircraft, then flew low over the crowd at 500 feet above ground level. Thereafter, a synchronized rifle drill performance by eighteen air warriors of the world-renowned Air Warrior Drill Team (AWDT) of IAF left the Nagpurians to be spellbound.
The following event featured a flying performance by the IAF “Sarang” (peacock, the national bird), a team of four modified Advance Light Helicopters (ALHs), Dhruv. The Sarang team demonstrated some breathtaking manoeuvres, including reaching the dais in the shape of a wine glass, followed by very clean and graceful India and diamond formations.
This was followed by the gravity-defying Dolphin’s leap, which is a three-aircraft synchronized stall turn. The aircraft formation, thereafter, executed spectacular high-speed crosses. Meanwhile, two aircraft painted a white heart in the sky.
The last was the signature manoeuvre wherein the “Sarang” split, and the team leader presented an aerial salute to the guests. The choppers flying just two propellers distance from each other showed the superior skills and expertise of the pilots.
The No. 5 Air Force band performed patriotic marches, including “Sound Barrier,” “Ae Watan Watan,” and “Mera Mulk Mera Desh,” to arouse the nation’s pride in the Indian Air Force.
The performance by the AF Band was followed us a scintillating air display by the Surya Kiran Aerobatic Team (SKAT), comprising nine Hawk Mk. 132 aircraft. In the SKAT performance, pilots flew in a variety of formations, including the diamond, “Tejas,” “Prachand,” barbed-wire cross, and inverted Vic. The pilots’ flawless crossings and breathtaking manoeuvres were undoubtedly beautiful to watch.
After the air show, the public may visit a static exhibition of aero models, Mi-17 V5 aircraft, and numerous operational tools. At the Air Fest location, information booths answered questions from young adults and students about the IAF’s different employment prospects.
Navy Week Air Display
In another development, a static helicopter display for differently-abled and other school children was organised at INS Shikra, a premier heliport of the Western Naval Command in South Mumbai, through a guided tour by officers and men of the Navy, as part of “Navy Week 2022” on Saturday.
Children were provided a brief on the roles and capabilities of Indian Navy helicopters such as Kamov, Chetak, Seaking, and ALH. They also had an insight into the operations of multiple naval helicopters.
A large number of children visited the Air Station and utilised the opportunity to understand and appreciate the yeoman service rendered by the Air Arm of the Indian Navy. The aim of the event was to instill in young minds a patriotic fervour and a feeling of pride for the armed forces that protect the nation.