Thursday, October 17, 2019

IAF launches fighter operations from six civilian airfields

New Delhi: The IAF on Wednesday launched fighter operations from six civilian airfields in the eastern part of the country with the overall aim to use them during conflict situations in the region, even as the Army is conducting the major “Him Vijay” combat exercise in Arunachal Pradesh.
The Shillong-based Eastern Air Command on Wednesday said Sukhoi-30MKI “air dominance” fighters and the Hawk advanced jet trainers will operate from Kolkata, Pasighat, Andal, Dimapur, Imphal and Guwahati in two phases from October 16 to 19 and October 29 to November 1.
“The endeavour is part of capability-building and operational training to undertake operations from dispersed locations in case of hostilities. The exercise will familiarize IAF crews with the procedures of flying from these busy airfields and coordinating with their civilian counterparts. The civil airfields, in turn, will get familiar with the conduct of military operations,” said an officer.
The IAF will need to operate from civilian airfields in the region if the existing fighter bases like Tezpur, Kalaikunda and Chabua come under attack or are bombed during a war. The force also regularly undertakes flying operations from some national highways to prepare for such eventualities.
17/10/19 Rajat Pandit/Times of India

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