Under the collective shadow of the Pulwama terror attack, the simmering Rafale controversy and the fatal Mirage 2000 crash, the 12th edition of Aero India took off here on Wednesday with a decisively political and strategic edge.
Despite its low-key presence in the previous airshows, the Rafale will dominate the narrative at the show venue, the Yelahanka Air Force Station here. The aircraft deal, which has kicked up a much political storm, is expected to find its echo right from the airshow’s formal launch by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Made for India version of the aircraft will not be seen. But its French maker, Dassault Aviation has flown in three jets, two geared up for flight displays on all five show days.