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INTERVIEW
‘IAF Envisages a Combat Strength of Approximately 40 Squadrons by 2020’
Chief of Air Staff, Indian Air Force, Air Chief Marshal, P.V. Naik PVSM, VSM, ADC
What will be the combat squadron strength of the Indian Air Force in 2020? What is the ideal combat strength that the IAF would like to have by 2020, and what steps are being envisaged to fill the gap between the desired and actual?
Though the IAF envisages a combat strength of approximately 40 squadrons by the year 2020, it would be unwise to base our combat effectiveness solely on the basis of numbers. The fast changing geo-economic-political equations has led to complex situations that have a direct bearing on our security challenges. This demands continuous evolution of our war-fighting doctrines and its resultant implementation by way of upgrades, acquisitions and modernisation. We have formalised our annual acquisition plans with the objective of providing IAF with a ‘set of capabilities’ so as to neutralise threats emanating from conventional or sub-conventional factors. The aim is that with these capabilities in place we will be able to address security concerns within our area of responsibility.
 
What is the update on the Mirage-2000 upgrade commercial negotiations? What is delaying the RFP for new Jaguar engine for its upgrade?
Commercial negotiations are underway for Mirage 2000 Upgrade. Cost Negotiation Committee (CNC) is nearing completion and the upgrades are likely to be completed by 2017. As far as Jaguars are concerned, there are no delays to the re-engining programme. Acceptance of Necessity has been accorded by the government. Two vendors have been identified and RFP to them would be issued shortly.
 
 
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