A seventh batch of three more Rafale fighter jets arrived in India after flying non-stop for a distance of almost 8,000 km from France, in a further boost to the strike capability of the Indian Air Force (IAF).
The new batch of the aircraft will be part of the IAF's second squadron of the Rafale jets.
The aircraft were provided mid-air refuelling by the air force of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
“Three Rafale aircraft arrived in India a short while ago, after a direct ferry from #IstresAirBase, France. IAF deeply appreciates the support by UAE Air Force for in-flight refuelling during the non-stop ferry,” the IAF said in a tweet.
Following the arrival of the new batch, the number of Rafale jets with the IAF went up to 24. The first Rafale squadron is based in the Ambala air force station. A squadron comprises around 18 aircraft. India had signed an inter-governmental agreement with France in September 2016 for the procurement of 36 Rafale fighter jets at a cost of around ~58,000 crore.