‘R-73 Selected’, Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman’s Last Radio Message Before Ejecting Out of Mig-21 Bison

Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman’s last radio message before ejecting his Mig-21 Bison was, “R-73 selected”. He then let loose the Vympel R-73 air-to-air missile at the Pakistan fighter jet, F-16, before he himself was hit. The dogfight between the Indian fighter jet and the Pakistan warplane started after the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) violated the Indian airspace on February 27. The PAF fighters dropped bombs at army formation camps in West of Rajouri in Sunderbani of Jammu and Kashmir. Pakistan Air Force Pilot Shahzaz Ud Din Whose F-16 Was Shot Down by Wg Cd Abhinandan Varthaman Mistaken to be Indian; Lynched by PoK Locals?

After ejecting from his MIg-21 Bison, his parachute drifted in Pakistan Occupied Kashmir (PoK) where he was taken into custody by the Pakistani Army. A day after the Indian Air Force (IAF) destroyed terror camps of Jaish-e-Mohammed in Pakistan’s Balakot on February 26, the PAF fighter jets violated the Indian airspace. Pakistan deployed F-16s, JF-17s and Mirage-5 attack jets in “a large strike packages” to retaliated against the IAF’s action. Pakistan’s F-16 Which Violated Indian Air Space Shot Down by Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman with Mig-21 Bison; IAF Presents Cover of AMRAAM Missile As Evidence.

Wg Cdr Varthaman was part of a team comprosing of six Mi-21 Bison pilots who took off from Srinagar, apart from Su-30 MKIs, Mig-29s and Mirage-2000s from other air force stations. According to reports, the dogfight lasted for about 15 minutes, during which the IAF pilot managed to “lock on” to PAF’s F-16 and then fired R-73 missile. It is a short-range air-to-air missile developed by Vympel NPO. Lockheed Martin Busts Pakistan’s Lie; American Aircraft Manufacturer Not to Sue India For Claiming IAF’s MiG-21 Bison Shot Down PAF F-16 Fighter Jet.

The IAF officer was released almost after 60 hours  by Pakistan on March 1. After his return from Pakistan via the Attari-Wagah border late on Friday night, the IAF pilot underwent a series of medical tests at Army’s Research and Referral (R&R) hospital in Delhi. As per reports, he sustained a rib fracture, back contusion (bruise on lower back) and some bruises on the face, head and hands. The hospital confirmed that the IAF pilot did not suffer any ‘significant’ injury.

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Russia offers India to Sell 21 used Mig-29s at Cheap Price; Will India Consider The Offer?

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Russian Mig 29

Russia offers India to sell 21 used Mig – 29s at a very cheap price. The Indian government would be very cautious to take a decision of purchasing these 21 fighter jets. India needs to draw parallel from the deal of buying aircraft carrier Admiral Gorshkov. Russia offered this aircraft carrier free of cost to India, only refurbishment cost was there, which was decided at $950 million. But as soon as the work started, the cost also kept on increasing. Finally India had to pay $2.4 billion, so India ended up paying almost $1.3 billion more than the decided cost. The aircraft carrier was delivered almost five years after the scheduled delivery time.

India will be deeply analysing the proposal of Russia. The Russian government offered a price of $25 million- $30 million for each aircraft, which is almost 30% of the new aircraft. The Indian government would also be considering the hidden cost. The Indian Air Force (IAF) is having Mig -29 UPG in its inventory, but The Russian Migs are different from the one’s the IAF is possessing. India has also rejected the Russian offer to co-develop fifth generation fighter jet because of the high cost involve in it.

Currently The IAF is facing shortage of Fighter squadrons. The Indian Air Force has only 34 fighter squadron against the authorised strength of 42 squadrons. It will reduce further as Migs will be retiring over the next few years. To tackle the shortage and to encounter the joint threat from China and Pakistan, the IAF has initiated a process on Friday to buy 110 fighter jets. Request for Information (RFI) was issued to seek tenders from the companies interested to sell fighter jets to India. Lockheed Martin’s F-16 Block 70, SAAB’s Gripen, Dassault Aviation’s Rafale and Boeing’s F-18 Super Hornet are the main contenders in the race to get $15 billion mega defence deal.