Recently, Russia showcased Ilyushin IL-76 a medium-range, multi-purpose, military transport aircraft doing practical bombing and firing from aerial cannons at ground targets. The flight altitude varied from 300 to 1000 meters, and the speed exceeded 500 km / h, the Russian defence ministry said.
As per the ministry, the flights were attended by the crews of the Tver, Pskov and Ivanovo air regiments, including young pilots and navigators who graduated from universities last year. Each of the crew members performed at least three sorties for combat use.
India also has the fleet of 17 IL-76 transport aircraft, as well as the seven IL-78 aerial refuelers, known as ‘Gajraj’ in the Indian Air Force. Can the Indian Air Force’s IL-76 can carry out a similar operation, a military analyst and retired IAF Jaguar pilot Vijainder K Thakur says yes, it can.
India and China are set to enter the seventh month of the military stand-off in the Ladakh region, with disengagement nowhere in sight ahead of the bitter winter of the Himalayas. As part of its logistical preparation for the troops in the Himalayas, India has deployed transport aircraft like the C-17, IL-76, C-130J to keep the supply chains moving.
In case the Himalayan conflict escalates, the military transport aircraft, also termed back-end warriors by Air Vice Marshal Manmohan Bahadur (retd), will be playing a major role but not just for the airlifting.
The heavy transport aircraft of the IAF has also airlifted tanks, T-72 and T-90 tanks, and armoured personnel carriers of the Indian Army from the plains to Ladakh against China. Recently, the video had emerged of IL-76 aircraft landing at an airbase in Ladakh.
Source: The EurAsian Times