The chiefs of Indian and French Air Forces recently joined the Air Exercise Garuda-VII in Jodhpur.
- It is a bilateral exercise between Indian Air Force (IAF) and French Air and Space Force (FASF).
- It provides a unique opportunity for both Air Forces to learn and imbibe each other’s best practices during operations while also highlighted the growing interoperability between the two Air Forces.
- Ex Garuda-VII is also the first occasion for the light combat aircraft (LCA) Tejas and the light combat helicopter (LCH) Prachand to participate in any international exercise.
- It includes four Rafale fighters and one A-330 multi-role tanker transport aircraft from the French side.
- Apart from the LCA and LCH, the IAF contingent consists of Su-30 MK-I, Rafale and Jaguar fighter aircraft, as well as Mi-17 helicopters.
- This is the seventh edition of the bilateral exercise.
- The first, third and fifth editions were conducted in India in 2003, 2006 and 2014 at Air Force Stations Gwalior, Kalaikunda and Jodhpur, respectively.
- The second, fourth and sixth editions were conducted in France in 2005, 2010 and 2019.