Policy

IAF hopeful of enhanced allocation in 12th Plan

Our Bureau Bangalore | Updated on November 15, 2017 Published on April 29, 2012

browne

The country's air power will get a fiscal lift in the 12th Plan with 12-15 per cent growth in outlay each year, according to the IAF Chief.

In recent years, the Air Force has been modernising at a very fast rate, arming itself with top fighting gear and upgrading infrastructure, Air Marshal Norman Anil Kumar Browne, Chief of Air Staff, said here on Saturday.

The fighters, transport planes and equipment it was buying were expensive. The years 2013, 2014 were also critical for the country's security. The services had to be extra alert when the Western allies withdrew from Afghanistan.

“We have been assured that at least for the 12th Plan [of 2012-17] we have the necessary budgetary support. This is about 12-15 per cent growth annually,” Air Marshal Browne said delivering the L.M. Khatre Memorial annual lecture. The event is organised by the Aeronautical Society of India.

IAF traditionally gets the highest allocation among the three Forces. It spends during the 11th Plan grew steadily compared with the Army or the Navy. For the current year it had budgeted Rs 28,523 crore for modernisation and over 2000 works. Its outlay for the last fiscal was Rs 26,987 crore.

This included an outlay of Rs 10,000 crore for part of the money to buy MMRCAs (medium multi-role combat aircraft). That cost was being negotiated. “We hope to finalise the contract this year.”

During the 11th Plan, IAF signed 317 contracts worth Rs 1.49 lakh crore. “To say that we utilised our funds is an understatement. If somebody else doesn't spend it, we take that as well,” he said in a lighter vein.

IAF hoped to maintain its 34 squadrons through 2017 or the 12th Plan. Besides the Sukhois that are operating, the fleet would have the indigenous LCA in two years; the forthcoming MMRCA and the Fifth Generation Fighter Aircraft (FGFA) that is still on the HAL's drawing board.

“It is critical for us to induct two LCA squadrons and the MMRCA squadrons. Only from the 13th Plan onwards we will continue to grow” and peak to 42 squadrons.

madhu@thehindu.co.in

Published on April 29, 2012
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