The Indian Air Force is continuing to suffer non-combat losses to its aircraft, reducing the size of its already small fleet of carrier-based aircraft.
A MiG-29K carrier-based fighter recently crashed in India. Fortunately, the pilot was able to eject safely. The incident took place in Goa, where INS Hansa, India’s main naval air station, is situated.
In 2004 and 2010, India’s Air Force ordered 45 MiG-26K and MiG-29KUB aircraft from Russia (the agreements were fulfilled by 2018). According to the International Institute for Strategic Studies, the aircraft are currently divided into two squadrons. The Russian-produced planes have been involved in incidents on a fairly regular basis.
In November last year, a MiG-29KUB was lost after it collided with a flock of birds, although no crew members were injured. In January 2018, a MiG-29 piloted by a trainee pilot caught fire after taking off. No one was injured in this incident either.
India is hoping to supplement its fleet of carrier-based aircraft with locally produced N-LCA Tejas NP2 aircraft, part of the Tejas family of models. A fighter of this model carried out its first successful landing on an aircraft carrier in January 2020.