Operational preparedness will be the key focus area of Air Chief Marshal Rakesh Singh Bhadauria. “Ramping-up operational preparedness, improving serviceability of the fleet, acquiring more technology will be my priority,” Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal Bhadauria said when asked about his priorities as head of the IAF. Not only is the Indian Air Force short of fighters, but the serviceability of its fighter fleet has also been a major cause of concern. The IAF has been battling a lack of spares and delays in maintenance.
Asked whether IAF could hit terror training camps in Pakistan, the Air Chief said, “We in the IAF are always prepared to meet any contingency that these challenges may pose against the defence of our nation.” Air Chief Marshal Bhadauria also said, “I am confident to take-up any threat and fight a full spectrum war.”
“I am speaking theoretically. We do not start an attack, we do not plan like that. If they (Pakistan) do anything, then we will respond according to the orders given by the government. Whatever be the targets given to us by the government, they will be taken care of,” Air Chief Bhadauria said when asked whether the force can take out 40 terror camps operating in Pakistan simultaneously. “The IAF is prepared to deal with any eventuality although there is no separate plan for Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. We have plans for everything,” the IAF Chief said.
Importantly, the Air Chief said that new secure communications inducted by the Indian Air Force will now ensure that communications cannot be jammed. Inquires, into how Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman continued to chase Pakistani fighters on February 27 – when the Pakistan Air Force had launched a counter-attack– had revealed that radio communications between the fighter control and fighters had been jammed by Pakistan.
The Air Chief also said that India will not be looking to import any platforms or equipment. For 5th generation fighters, IAF is “not looking” at foreign manufacturers, Air Chief Bahadauria said. The IAF is putting all its energies into the Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA) of the Hindustan Aeronautics Limited, he said. The 114 fighters IAF is acquiring is also through the “Strategic Partnership” route and will be made in India.
Source: Hindustan Times