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Opening of Agra-Lucknow Expressway: 8 jets, Akhilesh Yadav & Mulayam Singh Yadav
As India's longest expressway is opened to public, eight fighter jets of the Indian Air Force (IAF) will touch down on it.

The Greenfield expressway will be inaugurated by UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav and Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav at Unnao on Monday.

Among the eight fighter planes, four are Sukhoi jets and four Mirage 2000s. The Sukhoi jets will fly down from Bareilly and the Mirage 2000s from Gwalior.

The Defence Ministry has planned to use this expressway for landings of fighter planes in case of emergencies where military fields are not available. As a test, on Friday, a fighter jet practiced on a 3.3 km stretch of the highway marked for landings.

The 302 km expressway is expandable to 8-lanes and was completed in a record 23 months with a budget of Rs 13,200 crore and offers a direct link from the Yamuna Expressway to Agra.

The expressway has been equipped with automatic traffic management system to deal with fog and reduce road accidents. To connect Unnao and Kanpur, the expressway has an eight-lane bridge across the river Ganga.

The expressway starts from Agra and reaches Lucknow via Firozabad, Mainpuri, Etawah, Oraia, Kannauj, Hardoi, Kanpur Nagar and Unnao. With the expressway in place, the travel time between Agra and Lucknow has been reduced to three and half hours and between Lucknow and Delhi to 5-6 hours as compared to 10-12 hours earlier.

Meanwhile, Principal Secretary and CEO of Uttar Pradesh expressways industrial development Authority Navneet Sehgal was critically injured in an accident a head-on-collision on this expressway. Sehgal was returning from witnessing the IAF plane's fly-by-low altitude manoeuvre. Along with Sehgal, four others were injured in the accident as well.

The victims were rushed to the hospital and later to the Lucknow trauma centre.

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