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Farewell to the Foxbats
MiG-25s to be phased out on 1st May 2006

-The Indian Air Force is all set to phase out its small fleet of MiG-25 Foxbats on 1st of May 2006. The news first came to us via Sandeep Unnithan.

The MiG-25s were operated by No.102 Squadron "The Trisonics" at Bariellly. First inducted in 1981, a total of 8 single seater "R" versions and two twin-seater trainer "U" versions were procured over the course of time. Atleast three are known to have been destroyed in crashes.

News reports suggest that there are four flyable aircraft still left, with one of them being a twin-seater. All of the aircraft are operated by No.35 Squadron Rapiers, which apparently had taken over the aircraft from the Trisonics in 2003

The IAF had alredy decided that one of the flyable examples will be presented to the Indian Air Force Museum at Palam, while a second will go to the Air Force Academy at Dundigal. It has not been decided as to what will happen to the third and fourth airframes.

News on the BRF Grapevine (BR Forum Link) quotes member Ved mentioning the presence of a fifth airframe, which is up for grabs for eligible organisations to procure and maintain at thier own expense. As this is not an airworthy airframe, the proposing organisation will have to bear the expenses of transporting it from Barielly.

The Indian Air Force MiG-25 Fleet (Updated 20 Dec 2006):

Serial Variant Remarks
KP-312 R  
KP-351 R National Defence Academy
KP-352 R  
KP-353 R  
KP-354 R Possibly AFS Barielly
KP-355 R Air Force Museum, Palam
KP-356 R W/o Cr 3 Aug 94 at Barielly
KP-3106 R WFU at Bareilly
DS-361 U Not yet Decided
DS-362 U to Air Force Academy Dundigal

Related Links:
IAF to retire Foxbats in 2006 [Indian Express]

India retires Cold War spy MiGs [BBC]
IAF to decommission MIG-25s on May 1 [New Kerala]
Spy in sky counts days to last flight [Telegraph India]

The MiGnificient flying machines [Sunday Express]
The MiGnificient flying machines shorter report [Sunday Express]

 

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