The Indian Air Force has decided to retire one of its waning MiG-21 fighter jets, the Hindustan Times has reported.
The decision comes over three years after two Indian aircraft were shot down by Pakistan Air Force on February 27, 2019 and the then Wing Commander (now Group Captain) Abhinandan Varthaman was captured.
Another Indian aircraft SU 30 shot down by Pakistan Air Force fell on the other side of the Line of Control (LoC). On the same day, in panic, the Indian military shot down its own MI 17 helicopter near Srinagar.
The No.51 squadron which is dubbed Sword Arms will retire on September 30.
The rest of the three MiG-21 squadrons will not stay a part of the force for long either and will be phased out by 2025, according to the report.
Several IAF MiGs have crashed in recent years but the fleet had to be used longer than it was supposed to due to delays in the induction of new squadrons.