In what came as a shocker for the defense establishment of India, five of the Indian Rafale pilots who brought the jets to India from France had to take cover at Al Dhafra airbase in UAE when Iranian missile launch took place.
Five pilots started their journey in jets procured from France by India on Monday and had a stop at UAE at a French base of Rafale aircrafts. However soon after landing at the site, missiles from Iran were launched that caused panic at the airbase and French military officials asked the Indian pilots to take cover.
Al Dhafra has been the forward base for Rafale fighters since 2010 and have taken part in many operations especially Afghanistan among other countries as part of NATO.
The Rafale fighters reached India at around 3.30 pm on Wednesday after which senior Indian Air Force officials went to Ambala in Haryana where the planes would be stationed for now.
A Pentagon reporter for a US based news channel, Lucas Tomlinson tweeted that the Indian fighter pilots had to take cover at the Al Dhafra after an Iranian ballistic missile launch. However no missile came near the airbase and the cover was taken as a precautionary measure to protect lives and property at the airbase in UAE.
Iran had test fires series of ballistic missiles from ground into the Southern Arabian Gulf. The test lasted barely for some minutes but had put the security establishments in India in a tizzy after the reports reached here.
It is important to mention here that the Rafales have been procured by Indian amid growing tension with China in Ladakh region. There have been attempts by Chinese military in recent weeks where the country has not only encroached upon the Indian land in Ladakh but also killed 20 Indian soldiers during a hand to hand fight in June.