He did, however, quickly reassure all and sundry that "There were big opportunities for major international aerospace companies" who could set up "bases" in India through "alliances and partnerships."
The minister then headed over to the planes and lowered himself a bit shakily into the pilot’s seat of a training aircraft for a photo op, before proceeding towards the Sukhoi parked nearby.
There was palpable excitement that he might get into that next, but no such luck. While he went off to answer probing questions by the media and speak at a conference, I headed off to have a look at the actual event – spread over five massive hangers, several static displays of planes and occasionally in the skies above us.
Image: Members of The Flying Bulls aerobatics team from the Czech Republic fly in formation in their Zlin Z-50 aircraft during Aero India 2013 at the Yelahanka Air Force station in Bangalore on February 6, 2013.