Air Chief Marshal V R Chaudhari, the Chief of Air Staff (CoAS), said on Monday that the recent Russia-Ukraine conflict has had no ‘big impact’ on the availability of spare parts and materials with the Indian Air Force (IAF), because to the latter’s ‘strong’ spare inventory policy.
The IAF imports a variety of electronics and specialised spare parts and materials, including circuit boards, to maintain its Sukhoi-30 Mk-I fighter jets, which are the air force’s leading fighter jets.
Chaudhari further stated that the IAF had established a strategy of purchasing only the ‘bare minimum’ from other countries. “Everything we purchase in the future will be manufactured in India. We will not bring any armament systems or radars into the country.
The majority of them are sourced from Indian businesses “On the sidelines of the 142nd course’s passing out parade at the National Defence Academy (NDA) in Khadakwasla, near Pune, he informed reporters.
“We rely on Russia for a number of things, but the present crisis has had little influence on us because we have a comprehensive spare stalking policy in place and have already met our future requirements.” Many spare parts that we had been purchasing from Russia for many years have now been indigenized. In that respect, we can be pretty certain that we will not be without spare components in the coming years,” the CoAS stated.
“The IAF has placed a premium on the government’s ‘Atmanirbhar Bharat’ and ‘Make in India’ programmes,” he said. “In the future, these two measures will transform India’s status from the world’s greatest importer (of defence products) to an exporter,” he predicted. To address its future requirements, the IAF is partnering with Indian sectors, especially small-scale industry and academia, he noted.
“All three services (Army, Navy, and Air Force) have established specific departments that interface directly with Indian businesses. The administration has provided us with a list of “negative imports.” These things will never be brought into the country. We’re now putting out a ‘positive indigenization list.’ We will wait for these things, even if it takes a long time, and will only purchase them from Indian manufacturers.”
Chaudhari commented on the IAF’s modernization strategy, saying, “We have inked a contract to purchase 83 Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) and will begin receiving these planes next year. The LCA Mark-II and the fifth-generation Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft have been selected for procurement (AMCA).
A Request for Information (RFI) on the purchase of medium multirole fighter aircraft has been received. We shall proceed with the case as quickly as possible in order to obtain the Acceptance of Necessity (AoN). In addition, beginning next year, we will begin receiving deliveries of the C-295 cargo aircraft.”
Stresses multi-domain capabilities
“The future military commanders need to establish multi-domain capabilities to conduct operations in’shortened’ time frames under the current security dynamics,” Chaudhari remarked earlier, after reviewing the march and taking a guard of honour.
“With the introduction of new technology and profoundly different ideas, warfare is experiencing a major transformation. India’s security dynamics are complicated by a variety of threats and problems. It would necessitate the development of multi-domain skills as well as the simultaneous execution of operations in shorter timeframes “He went on to say.