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The Indian Air force is still flying 44-year-old MiG-21 fighter jets when no one even drives cars that old, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa was reported telling the Indian media on Tuesday.
The aircraft is in service for decades using Indian overhauling components. “Over 95 per cent of components required for the overhauling are made in India. The Russians are not flying the MiGs but we are because we have overhauling facilities,” said the Indian air chief. The jet flown by Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, which was shot down by the PAF and its pilot captured in the post Balakot air strikes, was an upgraded variant called the MiG-21 Bison.