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The Indian Air Force (IAF) will mark its raising day on October 8 as IAF Day today. The year 2021 marks 89 years since the IAF’s foundation, and celebrations will take place at the Hindon Air Force Station in Uttar Pradesh’s Ghaziabad in the presence of the Chief of Air Staff and senior officials of the three armed forces.

“A scintillating air display by various aircraft will be the hallmark of the Air Force Day Parade-cum-investiture Ceremony at Air Force Station Hindan (Ghaziabad),” said a release issued by the Ministry of Defence.

“The air display will commence with flag bearing skydivers of the famous AKASH GANGA Team dropping out of AN-32 aircraft in their colourful canopies at 08.00 am. The flypast would include heritage aircraft, modern transport aircraft and frontline fighter aircraft. The ceremony will conclude at 10:52 AM with the spellbinding aerobatic display,” it added. 

Why Indian Air Force Day is celebrated on October 8? 

The Indian Air Force was founded on October 8, 1932, and since then, it has played a key role in several crucial wars and landmark missions. Officially established as an auxiliary air force of the British Empire, the force honoured India’s aviation service during World War II with the prefix Royal. After India’s independence from the British in 1947, the name Royal Indian Air Force was kept and served in the name of Dominion of India. Three years later, with the government’s transition to a Republic in 1950, the prefix Royal was removed.

Since 1950, IAF has been involved in four wars with Pakistan and one with China. Other major operations undertaken by the IAF include Operation Vijay, Operation Meghdoot, Operation Cactus and Operation Poomalai. The IAF’s mission expands beyond engagement with hostile forces, as it takes part in United Nations peacekeeping missions.

Air Force Day 2021

The Indian Air Force Day parade today will pay tribute to the heroes of the 1971 war and include formations with call signs related to the places and people involved in the war in which India defeated Pakistan and led to the creation of Bangladesh. 

Last year, the theme for IAF Day was “the untiring efforts and supreme sacrifices of its personnel”. Meanwhile, in 2019, the nation witnessed the theme of “know your Air Force”.

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