New Delhi: Oct 8, 2012
More than a year after Sachin Tendulkar and Mahendra Singh Dhoni did not avail the offer to fly in its frontline Su-30MKI combat aircraft, the IAF today suggested that they would not be able to fly in any of their fighter jets in near future as the service was "very busy".
"No such decision has been taken. Sachin Tendulkar is already an honorary Group captain. That is how it is. We have not taken any decision in future, this is how it is today.
They are not going to be flying any aircraft at this point of time as the IAF is very busy," IAF Chief Air Chief marshal N A K Browne told reporters after the Air Force Day parade.
The IAF Chief was asked if the Government has decided against granting any honorary commission to celebrities after its experience with Tendulkar and Dhoni, who were not attending any of their functions.
Browne's predecessor ACM P V Naik had offered both Dhoni and Tendulkar a sortie in its best aircraft Su-30MKI from the Pune air base but the two have not yet been able to find time to avail the offer due to some reasons.
While Tendulkar has been granted the rank of Honorary Group captain in the IAF, Dhoni is an Honorary Lt Col in the Indian Army.
Recently, the IAF had flown ace shuttler Saina Nehwal in its Kiran MkII jet trainer aircraft at the Air Force Academy in Dindigul, Andhra Pradesh.