Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Ram Nath Kovind, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and others extended greetings to the Indian Air Force (IAF) and its personnel on the 88th Air Force Day.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday greeted the Indian Air Force on its foundation day, saying the courage, valour and dedication of its soldiers to protect the country inspire everyone. In a tweet on the Air Force Day, he lauded the force and said its brave soldiers do not only protect Indian skies, but also play a leading role in serving humanity during any crisis. The prime minister also posted a brief video in which he speaks of the Indian Air Force's (IAF) beginning in 1932 as a force of six pilots and 19 airmen and its rise to become one of the strongest forces in the 21st century.
"Many congratulations to all the brave warriors of the Indian Air Force on Air Force Day. You not only keep the skies of the country safe but also play a leading role in the service of humanity in times of disaster. Your courage, valour and dedication to protect Maa Bharti inspire everyone," PM Modi tweeted (roughly translated from Hindi).
President Ram Nath Kovind honoured air warriors, veterans and the families of Indian Air Force (IAF), saying that the nation remains indebted to the contribution of the IAF in securing the skies.
"On Air Force Day, we proudly honour our air warriors, veterans, and families of the Indian Air Force. The nation remains indebted to the contribution of the IAF in securing our skies and assisting civil authorities in Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief," President Kovind tweeted.
"The ongoing process of modernisation with induction of Rafale, Apache and Chinook will transform the IAF into an even more formidable strategic force. Confident that in the years to come, the Indian Air Force will continue to maintain its high standards of commitment and competence," he said in another tweet.
Meanwhile, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh also extended greetings to the IAF on the occasion. "My felicitations and best wishes to the air warriors and their families on the occasion of Air Force Day-2020. Eighty-eight years of dedication, sacrifice and excellence mark the journey of the IAF which is today a lethal and formidable force to reckon with," Singh tweeted.
The Nation is proud of its men and women in blue and salutes the prowess of the IAF as it stands ready to face challenges and deter adversaries. We remain committed to the enhancement of IAF's combat capability through modernisation and indigenisation, he added.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah also extended his greetings to the Air Force on the occassion, and reiterated the Centre's commitment towards the IAF. "Greetings on Indian Air Force day! From safeguarding our skies to assisting in all odds, our brave Air Force personnel have served the nation with utmost courage and determination. Modi govt is doing everything possible to keep our mighty air warriors roaring loud in the skies," Shah said in a tweet.
Even, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu extended his greetings to the Air Force. "I extend my warmest greetings to all Air Force personnel on the 88th Air Force Day. Our Air Warriors are known for their professionalism, excellence and courage. They have made the country proud in war and peace. May they touch the sky with glory," he tweeted.
Here's what others had to say:
The IAF was established on October 8, 1932, in undivided India which was under colonial rule. It was given the prefix "Royal" by King George VI for its contribution during the Second World War. The prefix was later dropped in 1950 when India became a republic.