Theatre Command structure should not in any way compromise the IAF’s doctrine: IAF Chief

Express News Service

NEW DELHI: Communicating the worries of the Indian Air Force with regards to the major reorganization exercise of the structure of the Armed Forces into theatres the Air Chief has clarified that the service was not opposing any process of integration or having theatre commands. “But we have certain reservations with respect to the structures.” said the IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari. He also talked about the situation along the LAC in Eastern Ladakh saying the best benchmark would be “complete withdrawal”.

As reported earlier by TNIE the war fighting structure of the Armed Forces (Army, Air Force and Navy) is being reorganised into theatre commands with an aim to have the assets of all three forces under one commander responsible for all operations under his theatre.

The IAF is in full support of the integration process but “It is only the methodology and the kind of structure that need to be future ready is what we are insisting on.” he added.

Elaborating on his views to make the structures Future ready, “it should be shorter decision making, reduction in the layers of command and control and more importantly to synergy the core competencies. Each service has a doctrine. The doctrinal aspects of the IAF is what I am worried about, should not in any way be compromised by this new structure.”

The Air Chief was addressing the media before the 90th Raising Day of the Force.

The Chief, commenting on the situation in Eastern Ladakh, said, “The best benchmark would be return to status quo ante and complete withdrawal from all the points all along the LAC. That is the ideal situation that we would look for.”

Disengagement has taken place at certain areas along the LAC. However, we keep monitoring the activities of the PLA Air Force. Infrastructure development continues to take place at a rapid pace across the LAC particularly Eastern Ladakh sector.” 

On the increased air activity by the Chinese the air chief said “we continuously monitor it by enhancing our air defence efforts there.”

“We have increased the presence of our radars and Surface to Air Guided Weapon (SAGW) systems. We have integrated them into the IACCS network, and appropriate non-escalatory air-defence measures are taken, always in time. We have been able to signal our intent and signal our state of readiness with the actions taken so far.” He said.

The Integrated Air Command and Control Systems (IACCS) has been planned to provide the complete picture of the air domain to assist him with quick and informed decisions.

As per the Chief, all preparedness in terms of infrastructure building, equipment, training and tactics is a continuous effort, irrespective of whether we see any belligerence on the part of the Chinese or not.

“The Confidence Building Measures (CBM) between India and China are in place. We have ensured that none of the CBMs are violated. In case there is a violation, we now have an Air Force officer who represents us in the border talks. In the last border management talks, we had an Air Force officer and the various air violations cases have been communicated to them. We will use the Army hotlines for communicating any air violations.” Added the IAF Chief.

NEW DELHI: Communicating the worries of the Indian Air Force with regards to the major reorganization exercise of the structure of the Armed Forces into theatres the Air Chief has clarified that the service was not opposing any process of integration or having theatre commands. “But we have certain reservations with respect to the structures.” said the IAF Chief Air Chief Marshal VR Chaudhari. He also talked about the situation along the LAC in Eastern Ladakh saying the best benchmark would be “complete withdrawal”.

As reported earlier by TNIE the war fighting structure of the Armed Forces (Army, Air Force and Navy) is being reorganised into theatre commands with an aim to have the assets of all three forces under one commander responsible for all operations under his theatre.

The IAF is in full support of the integration process but “It is only the methodology and the kind of structure that need to be future ready is what we are insisting on.” he added.

Elaborating on his views to make the structures Future ready, “it should be shorter decision making, reduction in the layers of command and control and more importantly to synergy the core competencies. Each service has a doctrine. The doctrinal aspects of the IAF is what I am worried about, should not in any way be compromised by this new structure.”

The Air Chief was addressing the media before the 90th Raising Day of the Force.

The Chief, commenting on the situation in Eastern Ladakh, said, “The best benchmark would be return to status quo ante and complete withdrawal from all the points all along the LAC. That is the ideal situation that we would look for.”

Disengagement has taken place at certain areas along the LAC. However, we keep monitoring the activities of the PLA Air Force. Infrastructure development continues to take place at a rapid pace across the LAC particularly Eastern Ladakh sector.” 

On the increased air activity by the Chinese the air chief said “we continuously monitor it by enhancing our air defence efforts there.”

“We have increased the presence of our radars and Surface to Air Guided Weapon (SAGW) systems. We have integrated them into the IACCS network, and appropriate non-escalatory air-defence measures are taken, always in time. We have been able to signal our intent and signal our state of readiness with the actions taken so far.” He said.

The Integrated Air Command and Control Systems (IACCS) has been planned to provide the complete picture of the air domain to assist him with quick and informed decisions.

As per the Chief, all preparedness in terms of infrastructure building, equipment, training and tactics is a continuous effort, irrespective of whether we see any belligerence on the part of the Chinese or not.

“The Confidence Building Measures (CBM) between India and China are in place. We have ensured that none of the CBMs are violated. In case there is a violation, we now have an Air Force officer who represents us in the border talks. In the last border management talks, we had an Air Force officer and the various air violations cases have been communicated to them. We will use the Army hotlines for communicating any air violations.” Added the IAF Chief.