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IAF's only C-17 woman pilot brings back Indians from Sudan under Operation Kaveri: Sources

NEW DELHI (PTI): Flight Lieutenant Har Raj Kaur Boparai, IAF's first and only woman pilot of the heavy-lift transport aircraft C-17 Globemaster, has taken part in Operation Kaveri, India's complex mission to bring back its citizens safely from the strife-torn Sudan, official sources have said.

The C-17 Globemaster is the largest aircraft asset of the Indian Air Force.

"Flt Lt Har Raj Kaur Boparai is a C-17 pilot. She took part in Operation Kaveri. The giant aircraft was flown from Hindon Air Base in Ghaziabad to Jeddah and from Jeddah it flew to Mumbai carrying the evacuees," an official source said.

The aircraft landed in Mumbai on Thursday, he said.

"Flt Lt H R K Boparai is the first and only woman officer of the IAF who's flown the C-17. She is the only woman officer in the aircraft's squadron," the source said.

The squadron is based at the Hindon Air Force Station.

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar shared images of the evacuees after they landed in Mumbai.

"Another #OperationKaveri flight comes to Mumbai. 246 more Indians come back to the motherland," he tweeted.

The total number of Indians brought home from Sudan so far stands at 606.

India is looking to rescue more of its citizens from the strife-torn African nation before the end of a tenuous ceasefire agreement between the regular army and a paramilitary force.

"Our efforts to swiftly send Indians back home from Jeddah is paying. 246 Indians will be in Mumbai soon, travelling by IAF C17 Globemaster. Happy to see them off at Jeddah airport. #OperationKaveri," Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan tweeted in earlier on Thursday.

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