Thiruvananthapuram (Kerala) [India], Jan 15 (ANI): The newly resurrected 222 Squadron will be operationalised with Brahmos equipped Sukhoi-30 air superiority fighter with twin-engine at Air Force Station in Thanjavur on January 20.
The induction ceremony of Su-30 Squadron will be inaugurated by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh at Thanjavoor, an official statement quoted Air Marshal Amit Tiwari, Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Southern Air Command announcing in a press meet here on Wednesday.
"The Indian Ocean Region (IOR) which is a central maritime spread, bordering three continents, has an important role to play in regional peace, security, and prosperity. The IAF is an intrinsically strategic force and is all set to extend the reach into the vast IOR," the statement said.
The 222 Squadron, also known as `Tigersharks' was raised at Air Force Station Ambala on 15 Sep 1969 with Sukhoi Su-7 aircraft. In July 1971, the Squadron moved to Air Force Station Halwara and took part in the 1971 war with Pakistan.
The squadron was recognized for its heroic efforts during the war and was awarded one Mahavir Chakra, three Vir Chakras, three Vayu Sena Medals and two Mention-in-Dispatches. In December 1985, the `Tigersharks' became the first Squadron in Indian Air Force equipped with Mig-27 Aircraft. The Squadron was number plated in 2011.
"The `Tigersharks', equipped with formidable, state of art air superiority fighter aircraft, which are armed with 2.5-ton air-launched BrahMos missile of 300 km range, have the capability to strike from large stand-off ranges on any target at sea or on land with pinpoint accuracy by day or night and in all weather conditions. The capability of the missile coupled with the superlative performance of the Su-30 MKI is all set to change the paradigm of maritime surveillance, security, and strike in the region.
Group Captain Prajul Singh, Station Commander Thanjavur AF Station, Group Captain Manoj Gera, Commanding Officer of Su-30 Squadron, Senior Officers of Southern Air Command and Dhanya Sanal, Defence Spokesperson were also present at the press meet. (ANI)