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“The storm is coming’: Image of Hanuman reappears on the full-scale model of HAL’s HLFT-42 aircraft on the last day of Aero India 2023

At Aero India 2023 which started on Monday, an image of Hanuman was seen on the full-scale model of the Hindustan Lead-in Fighter Trainer (HLFT-42) made by HAL, but it was removed the next day after some people objected to it, which triggered an outrage on social media

In the latest development at Aero India 2023 being held at Bangalore in Karnataka, the picture of Bajrang Bali Hanuman reappeared on the full-scale model of HLFT-42 (Hindustan Lead-in Fighter Trainer) made by Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL). On 14th February 2023, the picture of Lord Hanuman was removed from the tail of the fighter aircraft in order to ensure that the program runs through successfully without getting into any controversy. But the image reappeared on the aircraft on the last of the Aero India 2023 on 17 February, where the HLFT-42 full-scale model was displayed.

The Aero India show 2023 was inaugurated by PM Narendra Modi on 13th February 2023, Monday, in Bangalore. At the expo, Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) revealed a scale model of the Hindustan Lead-in Fighter Trainer (HLFT-42). The image of Bajrang Bali Hanuman embossed on the tail of this fighter aircraft has become one of the key attractions. The image of the Sanatan deity symbolizing power and devotion toward one’s duty comes with a declaration mentioned near the image that reads ‘The storm is coming’.

On 14th February 2023, the picture was removed from the model of the plane. In a statement, CMD of HAL CB Ananthakrishnan said, “It is not with any intention that it has been put, and it has not been with any intention that it has been removed. It is just to see that the program runs through successfully without getting into any [controversy].”

In another statement, Ananthakrishnan said, “We put up Lord Hanuman’s image only to showcase the plane’s strength. However, we decided to remove it after the controversy. The idea was to establish a link with our trainer aircraft, Marut. However, we saw controversy erupting around it. The project is at its first stage. We only want to concentrate on it.”

However, the removal of the image created another controversy, and there was a backlash against HAL for the removal. The public sector company was accused of bowing to the pressure of anti-Hindu elements.

Following the outrage, the Hanuman sticker with the ‘The storm is coming’ text has been put back on the vertical stabiliser of the model of the aircraft on the last day of Aero India 2023 on Friday. In the image, Hanuman is seen in battle mode carrying his mace.

Significance Bajrang Bali Hanuman

The HLFT-42’s forceful Lord Hanuman design on the tail establishes the connection between the new aircraft and the HLFT-24 Marut. HLFT-24 Marut was the first Indian-developed fighter aircraft. It was developed by HAL in 1961.

According to Hindu scriptures, Marut means the Pavan Dev which is the lord of air and wind. Pavan Dev is Lord Hanuman’s heavenly father. He bestowed many superpowers to Bajrang Bali Lord Hanuman including the one of flying at great speeds anywhere in space. Therefore, Bajrang Bali Hanuman is also called Maruti, that is, the son of Marut.

HLFT-42 with a picture of Bajrang Bali Lord Hanuman on its tail is thus seen as the successor of the fighter aircraft HLFT-24 Marut that helped Indian forces destroy many tanks of the Pakistani army in the battle of Longewala during the 1971 Indo-Pak war.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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