Conflict

India faces ‘sub-conventional threat’; ‘Be ready for ops at a very short notice,’ IAF Chief to officers

The mention of “sub-conventional threat” is in reference to the undying public uprising in Kashmir allegedly caused by “proxy war” by Pakistan

Srinagar: Revealing that India faces a “sub-conventional threat”, Indian Air Force chief, in an exceptional move, has asked his force to “be ready (for operations) at a very short notice”.

Air Chief Marshal B S Dhanoa, Chief of Air Staff, in letter written personally to each officer of the IAF has asked them “to focus on trainings which are needed (for operations) at a very short notice”.

The mention of “sub-conventional threat”, reported The Indian Express on Saturday, is in reference to the undying public uprising in Jammu and Kashmir allegedly caused by “proxy war” by Pakistan. It added that the letter has apparently referred to the “increasing number of attacks on military camps”.

Dhanoa – was elected as chief of IAF three months ago – in the letter which has been signed on March 30, has also pinpointed other issues, including ‘sexual harassment’ and ‘favouritism’, concerning the force.

“Be prepared for operations with our present holdings, at a very short notice,” ACM Dhanoa has directed his staff officers which number over 12000.

The FreePressKashmir tried to speak to Public Relations Officer of IAF in New Delhi, however, due to weekend off, no one was available to speak on the issue.

Given the importance of the issue vis-à-vis J&K, FreePressKashmir tried to investigate further in to the story from Srinagar based defence spokesperson, Col Rajesh Kalia.

“I can’t comment on a news report,” he replied when referred to the news story.

Directing officers, by writing such personal letters, the news report informed, was first done by Indian army chief — Field Marshal (then General) K M Cariappa on May 1, 1950 followed by General K Sundarji on February 1, 1986.

“In the present scenario, there is an ever persistent sub-conventional threat. Therefore, we need to be prepared for operations with our present holdings, at a very short notice.

Training needs to be focused towards this,” ACM Dhanoa has asserted.

The letter has also pinpointed that there is a “severe shortfall” in the number of fighter squadrons in the IAF.

Asking officers to be “combat effective professionals”, ACM Dhanoa writes: “There is no choice but to stay abreast of new technological advancements both own as well as that of our adversaries. Only then will we come out with war-winning, out of the box solutions.”

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