IAF undergoing transformation with infusion of technology, combat power: Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauri
Hyderabad, June 19, 2021
The Indian Air Force (IAF) is undergoing a monumental transformation with rapid infusion of niche technology and combat power in every facet of the operations primarily because of the unprecedented and rapidly evolving security challenges being faced, coupled with a rising geo-political uncertainty in the country's neighbourhood and beyond, Chief of the Air Staff (CAS) Air Chief Marshal R K S Bhadauri said today.
Delivering his address at the Combined Graduation Parade at the Air Force Academy (AFA), the Air Chief said the last few decades have clearly established the critical role of air power in achieving victory in any conflict.
Congratulating the 161 graduating officers for being awarded the President's Commission, he also complimented the six officers from the Indian Navy as well as the five officers from the Indian Coast Guard for earning their coveted wings.
“Today’s Combined Graduation Parade is historic because despite severe COVID constraints placed upon the training infrastructure you all have succeeded in completing your training, that too within the stipulated period. In fact, the Air Force Academy has flown over 20,500 hrs over the last one year – the highest ever in our history.
“All of you are very fortunate to be joining the Air Force at this juncture. The pilots will get to fly fighters carrying an array of potent standoff precision weapons and connected in networks.
“The transport and helicopter fleets are equipped with C-17, C-130, ALH, Chinook and Apache aircraft which are state of the art and capable of contributing equally effectively in war or HADR situations. Engineers will need to master e-MMS, which is one of the largest networked aircraft maintenance management systems in the world that we have established across the diverse type of aircraft,” he added.
“Controllers will have to adapt to vectoring fighters in large formations using digitised and networked IACCS systems in the MAFI environment. Logisticians will use automation to drive procurement and resupply through totally automated and computerised networks on inventory management. All of you will be tied together with a completely paperless e-governance suite to enhance the efficiency of basic administration across the entire Air Force.
“I have always believed that the generation you belong to is technologically adept and well versed with exploiting the digital space. Now is the time for you to prove it. I can assure you that the environment you will step into, when you cross these portals will not only challenge but stretch your capabilities. You will need to hit the ground running and work hard to deliver what the Air Force expects of you.
“It was with this focus that B Tech degree was introduced compulsorily for the Air Force cadets in NDA and I am happy to note that 81 of the 87 graduating officers from the Flying branch are B.Tech. I am sure this will facilitate rapid comprehension and exploitation of modern platforms, weapons, sensors and technologies,” he said.
"While maintaining operational readiness, IAF has also been proactively assisting in the national fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Proactive vaccination and strict COVID discipline within IAF enabled us to undertake all COVID tasks on a war-footing.
"IAF’s heavy-lift capability was put into action for airlift of crucial COVID related equipment; wherein our transport fleet flew more than 3800 hours within two months in a huge effort across the globe and domestically to transport critical oxygen tankers and all related medical equipment and supplies," he added.