Fighter aircraft of the Indian Air Force (IAF) today performed breathtaking touch-and-go landings on a stretch of the Lucknow-Agra Expressway here, displaying the force's capability to use highways in case of an emergency.
Over a dozen IAF planes, including Mirage 2000, Sukhoi-30 MKI fighters and C-130J Super Hercules transport aircraft weighing 35,000 kg, took part in the three-hour-long exercise near Bangarmau in the district, about 65 km from Lucknow.
This is the first time that a transport aircraft landed on a highway. Inducted into the Air Force in 2010, the plane can carry 200 commandos.
Mirage 2000 and Sukhoi 30 MKI -- which form the backbone of the IAF's fighter fleet -- have landed on the Yamuna Expressway near Delhi in the past too.
In 2015 and later in May 2016, Mirage 2000 planes landed on the expressway, but this was for the first time that a transport aircraft touched down on a highway, according to PRO, Defence (Central Command), Gargi Malik Sinha.
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