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Lack of timely decision making resulted in gaps in IAF:

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Lack of timely decision making in the last decade resulted in gaps in the and the is committed to fill them, Defence Minister said today.

In an address at the bi-annual conference of commanders, the defence minister Sitharaman also said that the budgetary allocations should not be viewed as a constraint and should be looked at to acquire what is "absolutely necessary," the said.


Inaugurating the three-day conference, she also said that the powers given to the service chiefs should be "fully utilised" in achieving required capabilities of the forces.

"She said that the is committed to fill the gaps which have arisen due to lack of timely decision making in the last decade," the said in a statement.

Currently, the has 33 fighter squadrons against the authorised strength of 42 squadrons. The has been pressing the to expedite of combat jets to overcome the shortage.

The is likely to start the process later month to acquire a fleet of single engine fighter jets which are expected to significantly enhance its overall strike capability. It is also looking at procuring various other platforms and weapons systems.

The commanders conference is taking place amid an evolving regional security scenario and growing assertiveness by China in some parts of the Sino-India border.

Last week, Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa had said the is capable of effectively countering any threat from China and Pakistan simultaneously in a two- front war.

Sitharaman said the along with the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and the Ordnance Factory Board, a state-run defence equipment maker, should make an assessment about the possible areas of indigenisation under the 'Make-in-India' programme.

In his address, Air Chief Marshal Dhanoa emphasised the need for continuous effort and training to maintain IAF's air power, and called for continuing the process to enhance capability of the force.

He also reiterated the IAF's role as the first responder in most contingencies and thus the need to sustain the ongoing process of capability enhancement making use of the government's thrust on the 'Make-in-India' initiative.

The said the conference will deliberate on a raft of issues which will decide the future trajectory of the force.

It said deliberations will take place on operations and maintenance issues.

Various administrative initiatives were also expected to be taken at the conclave to enhance the working environment of the

In sync with the government's digital India initiative, two mobile applications for Air Force Cellular Network (AFCEL) phones will also be released during the conference, the said.

A book titled 'Aero India- Ascent through the ages' was also scheduled to be released during the conference.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, October 10 2017. 19:57 IST
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