Resurfaced runway in West Bengal to be inaugurated on Tuesday

Kolkata, July 31 (IANS) The recently resurfaced runway at Air Force Station Panagarh in West Bengal’s Burdwan district will be inaugurated on Tuesday, the defence ministry said here on Friday. Panagarh will be the eventual headquarters of a new Indian Army mountain strike corps that is in the process of being raised.

The refurbished runway will be capable of operating all aircraft in the inventory of Indian Air Force, making Panagarh one of the premier air bases under the Eastern Air Command, the ministry said in a release.

The Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Air Command, Air Marshal S.B. Deo will inaugurate the runway and visit various operational facilities and lodger units of the station and interact with air force personnel at the airbase.

Latest assets such as the C-130J Super Hercules medium-lift transport, a state-of-the-art technology radar system and a surface to air missile system are planned for induction at the airforce station.

Additionally, the base will also serve as the launch pad for humanitarian and disaster relief missions.

The operating surface at Panagarh was laid between 1942 and 1944 during the Second World War by the allied forces as part of their China-Burma (now Myanmar)-India campaign.

During the 1971 war, the airbase was activated and two fighter squadrons (Sukhoi-7 & MiG-21) were deployed for operations.

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