Monday Mar 04, 2019
Pakistan used a JF-17 jet fighter to shoot down an Indian warplane on Wednesday, according to a report by the CNN.
The JF-17 Thunder is an advanced, light-weight fighter aircraft, developed jointly by Pakistan and China.
“It may have been one of those jets that on Wednesday downed an Indian Air Force fighter plane,” stated the report, “leading to the capture by Pakistan of an Indian pilot.”
The CNN report further added that the Indian side used a MiG-21, designed by the Soviets, that has been in service since the 1960s. “Indian pilots call the old jet ‘the flying coffin’ for the accidents it has been involved in.”
India has in recent years been trying to modernize its military. But it does not have the industry ecosystem, the report added. India “may have smart engineers, but that does not mean that they can design a combat jet," an expert told CNN.
Meanwhile, Pakistan is making its own fighter jets with China.
The first prototype of the JF-17 Thunder was rolled out in 2003, according to the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) Kamra’s website. However, it was unveiled to the nation on March 23, 2007. Since then, the JF-17 has been formally inducted into the Pakistan Air Force.
This past week, tensions spiked between the two nuclear-armed South Asian neighbours, India and Pakistan, after Indian warplanes violated the border, between the two countries, to carry out airstrike within Pakistan’s territory. The next day Pakistan’s air force shot down an Indian MiG-21. The captured pilot was returned to India on Friday.