The second bi-annual IAF Commanders’ Conference was inaugurated by the defence minister on Monday at Air Headquarters (Vayu Bhawan) New Delhi, India.

Chief of the Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria PVSM AVSM VM ADC, welcomed Rajnath Singh, Raksha Rajya Mantri Shri Shripad Yesso Naik, Defence Secretary Dr Ajay Kumar and Secretary Defence Production Shri Subhash Chandra. CAS further introduced Air Force Commanders to Singh.

The Commanders’ Conference will be conducted on 25 & 26 Nov 19; wherein discussions will take place on joint operations, anti-drone operations, countering asymmetric warfare and further strengthening our precision targeting, cyber and information warfare capability.  Issues pertaining to indigenization, streamlining procurement of equipment, strengthening training and optimization of the HR policies would also be discussed during this edition of the conference.

Whilst addressing at the conference, Defence Minister addressed the Commanders and said “The Nation is proud of the Indian Air Force.  I praise the IAF for its professionalism and laud all air warriors and their families for giving us a most competent and combat worthy force.  The IAF has proven itself time and again. It has earned the respect of foreign Air Forces who are eager to cooperate as well as exercise with us.  We are strengthening our defence capability through increased domestic production and reduced dependence on import of military hardware. We must seize new opportunities for indigenous design and development, and I appreciate the IAF’s effort in this regard. I urge the Air Force Commanders to use the Conference for developing strategies against future challenges and enhancing IAF’s capability.  The IAF is growing steadily towards becoming a truly strategic aerospace power”

The CAS further briefed the Raksha Mantri on the current status of the IAF. The CAS while addressing the Commanders emphasized the need for further enhancing our operational capabilities to deter any misadventure by our adversaries. He highlighted the need for continuous enhancement of in-house maintenance capabilities and optimum utilization of new inductions in order to make IAF a formidable combat force.  He also emphasized the need for enhanced joint training with the Indian Army as well as the Indian Navy for fostering joint manship and ensuring national security.

(The writer is a Delhi-based independent contributor to print and online publications)