Surya Kiran, the acrobatic team of Indian Air force is all set to fly the British Hawk. Back in 2006, Wing Commander Sandeep Bansal, who commanded the Surya Kiran team had said that they were looking forward to get the HAL built Intermediate Jet Trainer (IJT – 36) by 2008 and the British Hawk.
HAL non delivery schedules have kicked in for IJT-36 which is till under developmental flights and had been delayed due to engine AL-55I, a crash land technical issues. The first IJT-36s was supposed to be delivered in 2006-07. HAL already has an order for 12 Limited Series Production aircraft for Surya Kiran team and a further order for 60 production aircraft.
IAF has begun the process of converting Surya Kirans to the Hawks and the team has already been testing it. Surya Kirans will 2-3 years to completely shift to the Hawks aircraft. The Kiran MkII scheduled to be retired in another five years.