Minister Nirmala Sitharaman flies in IAF’s Sukhoi jet. See pics, video

Updated on Jan 17, 2018 05:45 PM IST

After the sortie, defence minister Sitharaman said it was “eye-opening and memorable”.

Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the cockpit of the Sukhoi-30 MKI, familiarising herself with the fighter aircraft, before taking off for a sortie(@DefenceMinIndia/Twitter)
Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the cockpit of the Sukhoi-30 MKI, familiarising herself with the fighter aircraft, before taking off for a sortie(@DefenceMinIndia/Twitter)
Press Trust of India, Jodhpur | ByPress Trust of India

Union defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Wednesday undertook a sortie in the IAF’s frontline combat jet Sukhoi 30 MKI from the air base in Jodhpur.

The country’s first woman defence minister sat in the rear seat behind the pilot and was wearing the pilot’s G-suit.

“She is reviewing the operational preparedness and combat capabilities,” defence sources said.

“Very proud and thankful that I’ve gone through this experience because it actually tells me with what rigor, practice, what level of readiness and how quickly they (defence personnel) have to respond to situations. It was eye-opening and memorable,” said Sitharaman after the sortie.

The Sukoi-30 MKI is a nuclear-capable aircraft which can penetrate deep into enemy territory.

Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the cockpit of the Sukhoi-30 MKI.
Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman in the cockpit of the Sukhoi-30 MKI.
Air Warriors at the Air Force Station in Jodhpur with defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman before the sortie. (@DefenceMinIndia/Twitter)
Air Warriors at the Air Force Station in Jodhpur with defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman before the sortie. (@DefenceMinIndia/Twitter)
Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman in a flying G-suit before taking off in a SU 30MKI. (ANI Twitter)
Defence minister Nirmala Sitharaman in a flying G-suit before taking off in a SU 30MKI. (ANI Twitter)
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