Prime Minister Narendra Modi reached Bangladesh in the newly inducted Boeing 777 VVIP aircraft with callsign Air India One. The custom-made Boeing B777 were inducted last year to replace the ageing 747 used to fly the President of India, Vice President and the Prime Minister on international state visits.
The aircraft will be specially retrofitted with the latest self-defence protection suite for VVIP transport duties. The aircraft was originally owned by Air India, and has been handed over to the Indian Air Force (IAF), which will use it to ferry the Prime Minister, the President and the Vice President. The new aircraft has a call sign ‘Air India One’. These are a duo of identical aircrafts that have been modified have cost approximately Rs 8,400 crore. Similar to the Air Force One, the B777 planes will have state-of-the-art missile defence systems called Large Aircraft Infrared Countermeasures (LAIRCM) and Self-Protection Suites (SPS). In terms of livery, the aircraft dons the national emblem and the name ‘India’ and ‘Bharat’ written in both Hindi and English on either sides of the aircraft, while the national flag is present on the tail wing.
President Ram Nath Kovind inaugurated Air India One when he boarded the B777 aircraft on its inaugural flight to Chennai in November 2020.The aircraft is operated by pilots of the Indian Air Force and not of Air India.The planes can reportedly fly between India and the US in one go without having to stop for refuelling. The Air India One planes have similar security measures as the Air Force One planes used by the US President.