IAF Chief Marshal Rakesh Kumar Singh Bhadauria, while addressing a press conference in Delhi, said that he intends to carry forward the legacy that has been bestowed upon him. He also said that India is progressively nearing the goal of a robust network of centric operational capabilities.
While talking about IAF’s commitment to the Make in India initiative, he said, “IAF remains committed to the indigenous development in consonance with the Make in India initiative of the honourable Prime Minister.”
He further added, “I intend to carry forward this legacy and proactively ensure that indigenisation remains one of our main focus in times to come and indigenised equipment becomes our main say in the future.”
During the event, he also spoke about the induction of the new inventory. He said that the addition of new inventory combat aircraft and lethal precision weapons will give IAF a chance to have an upper edge in the battlefield. Furthermore, he added that it would provide the IAF with capabilities to deter and punish the enemy whenever the need arose.
He further went into the details of the inventory and said that several steps are being taken to build up the strength of the fighter fleets of IAF. He talked about the mid-life Mirage-2000, MiG-29 and the Jaguar fleet and said the upgrade programme is right on track. He also mentioned that the MIG29 is also progressing well and the 220MKI is also been expected to get an update in the near future. In helicopters, the IAF is modifying Mi-17 and Mi-5 to provide Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) capability and be suited with some warfare capability. Additionally, the Mi-17 and Mi-17V are also being updated and in the new face, they will have glass cockpit, avionics, and some Electronic Warfare (EW) capability.
The Chief also talked about the Force’s achievements in the past few months and also mentioned the various aircraft acquisition projects that India has in mind, including the ongoing Rafale fighter jets.