The first Transports in the IAF were Douglas C-47 Dakotas inducted into No.12 Squadron. This lone squadron was expanded with induction of more Dakotas following independence. Aircraft like the C119 Packet, the Caribou, the Otter, the An-12, the HS748 etc were acquired over the years to form the backbone of the air-lift forces.
The Gooney bird was the first major transport aircraft inducted into the fledgling Indian Air Force. No.12 Squadron was the first unit to requip with this aircraft way back in 1945. The Dakota was at the forefront of operations for the next four decades.
The Devon is a twin engined tricycle gear aircraft inducted in 1949 and used by the Air HQ and Communication flights of the IAF. It was a popular aircraft used for executive transport and served for nearly three and a half decades with the IAF.
The C119 Packet was inducted into the IAF to augment the Dakota in the Transport fleet. It equipped several squadrons, with No.12 Squadron being the first to convert from Dakotas. The Packet would be used till the mid 80s as a medium sized transport aircr
The Caribou was another aircraft with outstanding STOL capabilities. As with the Otter, it was employed extensively in the North East. No.33 Squadron "The Caribous" was raised on this aircraft and would operate it for more than 25 Years.
The Antonov-12 was a four engined turbo-prop driven transport aircraft in the same class as the C-130 Hercules. The Indian Air Force inducted the first of these aircraft in 1961, when it raised No.44 Squadron "The Himalayan Geese".
The Indian Air Force inducted three Tupolev Tu-124s into thier Air HQ and Communication Squadron for VIP duties. One of the three aircraft was lost in a crash at Jorhat, while the other two have been relegated to preservation duties.
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