19th October 2020

Confidant Classes

A Premier Judicial Service Coaching

Five Rafale fighter jets were incorporated into the Indian Air Force

Five Dassult Rafale planes were incorporated into the Indian Air Force, becoming an operational part of the army. They joined the IAF Golden Arrows squadron based at Ambala Air Base in Haryana. The event was attended by Minister of Defense Rajnath Singh and his French counterpart Florence Parly.

  • While the planes were delivered to India last October, they did not arrive by air until the end of July, with IAF pilots being trained in France. At the event, Mr. Singh and Air Chief Marshall R.K.S. Bhadauria spoke of border tensions with China, the latter saying the induction could not have taken place at a more opportune time.
  • Ms Parly said the planes would give India “an advantage over the whole region”. The role of the jets in maintaining peace in the Indo-Pacific, another point of friction with China, was also mentioned by the ministers of India and France.
  • The purchase of the Rafale aircraft had sparked much controversy over the deal with France. Now the plane is joining the military at a time when India faces one of the biggest national security crises. These two factors together give importance to the image that appears on the first page.
  • Defense Minister Rajnath Singh on Thursday called the addition of the French Rafale fighter to the Indian Air Force (IAF) “a game changer” and called it a very important step in light of the conditions of security. ruling which “were created along the borders of India”.
  • This official ceremony also marks its full operational integration into the IAF, said Air Chief Marshal (ACM) RKS Bhadauria. “They are ready to go and deliver,” he said.
  • Five Rafales were part of the No. 17 Golden Arrows squad. It is the first imported fighter to be installed since the arrival of the Sukhoi-30 from Russia in the late 1990s.
  • A traditional “Sarva Dharma Puja” took place, followed by an aerial demonstration of the Rafale and the indigenous Tejas aircraft, as well as the Sarang helicopter acrobatic team.
  • A traditional water cannon salute was given to the jets prior to their official induction. The five Rafales arrived in Ambala from France at the end of July. They were delivered to India in France last October, but have since been used to train IAF pilots there.
  • The aircraft, three single-seater and two two-seater trainers, was flown from France by IAF pilots led by the No. 17 Squadron Commander, Group Captain Harkirat Singh.
  • They give the IAF a huge boost in capacity amid the squadron’s decline in strength. At India’s request, France has stepped up deliveries of the Meteor Beyond Visual Range (BVR) air-to-air missile with the first batch of planes. The second batch of four Rafale should arrive in October.
  • In September 2016, India signed an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) of 7.87 billion euros with France for 36 Rafale in flight condition with 13 India-specific upgrades (ISE).
  • The Rafale was initially selected as part of the call for tenders for multi-functional combat aircraft (MMRCA) issued in 2007. But the final deal stalled due to differences and the call was eventually made was withdrawn after Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s announcement of the emergency purchase in April 2015, citing the “critical operational need” of the IAF.
  • ISE includes Israeli helmet-mounted displays, radar warning receivers, low-band jammers, infrared search and tracking systems, among others. In addition, the Rafale is armed with the Meteor missile (considered a game changer in the region with a range of over 150 km), the SCALP long-range air-to-surface attack missile and the MICA multi-mission air missile.
  • The IAF also arms the Rafale with HAMMER medium-range air-to-surface missiles (Highly Agile Extended Range Modular Ammunition) which are procured on an emergency basis. Ambala Air Base is also home to two Jaguar squadrons fighters and a squad of MiG-21 Bison. Hasimara, in West Bengal, will host the second Rafale squad.
  • The Indian Air Force (IAF) has much to applaud with the arrival of five Rafale multipurpose fighter jets in terms of technology and the increased capabilities it brings.
  • In the words of the Air Chief Marshal (ACM) R.K.S. Bhadauria and former ACM B.S. Dhanoa, Rafale is a “game changer”. Summing up what the Rafales bring, ACM Bhadauria said in February that at the time of the Kargil conflict in 1999, India had an advantage over Pakistan in terms of missile capability beyond visual range (BVR).
  • According to its manufacturer Dassault Aviation, the Rafale is an omnidirectional fighter capable of assuming the full spectrum of roles: air superiority and air defense, close air support, deep strikes, reconnaissance, anti-ship strikes and nuclear deterrence.
  • With its advanced Active Electronically Scanned Array (AESA) radar, electronic warfare suite and network-centric capabilities, in addition to its weaponry, the Rafale is now the most advanced fighter in the IAF arsenal, outperforming the SU-30MKI, which must make important updates.
  • The Rafale is also the first imported fighter to enter service for more than two decades since the SU-30 in the late 1990s. The Rafale has 14 hard points for weapons and can carry a total external load of more than 9 tons.
  • In addition to the Meteor, it is armed with SCALP long-range attack air-to-ground missiles and MICA multi-mission air-to-air missiles. The latest addition, the highly agile modular ammunition medium-range air-to-surface missiles (HAMMER), is purchased through the emergency route.
  • Another important factor with the Rafale is that under the contract, at least 75% of the Rafale fleet must be operational, which would make it the most available fighter in the IAF fleet.
  • Rafale’s first squad, # 17 Golden Arrows, will be based in Ambala and the second squad will be in Hasimara. All 36 aircraft will be delivered on time by the end of 2021, the Indian Embassy in France announced last week.
  • The 7.87 billion euro (59,262 crore) intergovernmental deal, signed in September 2016 between India and France for 36 leaking Rafale aircraft, also includes 13 India-Specific Enhancements (ISE), one-time design and development with a cost of Rs. 9,855 crore. Some of these relate to radar enhancements, helmet-mounted display, the ability to start and operate from high-altitude airfields, advanced infrared search and track sensor, and an electronic very powerful jammer module.
  • The deal also incorporates the cumbersome defense procurement process in which government-to-government deals have recently become the solution.
  • Rafale was originally selected as part of the tender for medium multipurpose combat aircraft launched in 2007, which in turn was conceived as a replacement project for the Mig-21 in the early 2000s.
  • Rafale was selected in 2012, but Negotiations remained blocked due to differences and the bidding was eventually withdrawn after the emergency purchase announced by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in April 2015, citing “operational need for review” from the IAF.
  • However, the 36 Rafale will do little to halt the decline in the IAF’s fighter squad number, which has an authorized strength of 42 squadrons, but is currently down to 31.
  • To compensate for this, the IAF is betting on the native Texas Light Fighter (LCA). The 83 LCA-Mk1A contract is in the final phase, adding to the 40 jets already contracted.
  • Work is also under way on a more advanced LCA-Mk2. The government recently approved the acquisition of 21 MIG-29 aircraft from Russia, which will add two more squadrons.
  • In addition, 12 SU-30MKI aircraft have also been approved, which will replenish the number of Sukhois lost in accidents. The IAF will also eliminate five squadrons of Mig-21s in the coming years.
  • As the IAF works to prevent numbers from falling further, the Rafale, which joins the IAF at a time of unprecedented tensions on the border with China, will give the force in the region a qualitative advantage.
  • On October 8, 2019, the first Rafale fighter jet of the Indian Air Force (IAF) was delivered to Defense Minister Rajnath Singh in France.
  • This step is the latest in a series of necessary but still overdue steps to strengthen the IAF’s combat capabilities.
  • The IAF has always been one of the best equipped forces in the region, but it has seen its advantage, particularly quantitative, diminish against China and Pakistan. made in India under the controversial Chapter 7 Defense Procurement (DPP) procedure of 2016.
  • It is not known where the budget support will come from for a 114 modern combatant program and, indeed, the capacity of the country to establish and maintain two manufacturers of hunters.
  • Defense budgets have been stable for a long time, and as the economy recedes, capital spending is unlikely to increase. Acquisition funding will also necessarily have to compete with research and development funding for upcoming national projects, such as the redesigned LCA Mk.2 and the Fifth Generation Advanced Medium Fighter (AMCA).
  • Finally, even if all the short-term acquisitions go according to plan, there is still a period of “acceleration” to manage; the training of air and ground crew, the construction of infrastructure and the commissioning of types. will pose their own challenges that will delay the effective rate of strength building.
  • Meanwhile, the Pakistani Air Force (PAF) and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLAAF) Air Force are not left out. The PAF is responsible for a number of legacy issues that are similar to the IAF.
  • However, with the Sino-Pak JF-17 available at low cost and in quantity, as well as access to a wide range of Chinese weapons developed for this type, Pakistan is well placed to recapitalize a significant part of its air force. with relatively modern planes.
  • Development and production of the JF-17 can also be expanded to replace PAF’s Mirage fleet on short notice, if required. And as China ramps up its fifth-generation aircraft programs and unit costs drop, there is no doubt that these platforms will also travel to Pakistan.
  • The growth of PLAAF is well documented. And in addition to a fourth and fifth generation modernization program, the service benefits from a host of force multipliers, including tankers, surveillance and control aircraft, and long-range bombers.
  • Although primarily intended to take on the US military in the Pacific and beyond, China’s formidable air arsenal cannot be ignored in New Delhi.
  • As the IAF prepares to welcome its new acquisitions, it must be clear about the challenges it faces at a time when India’s strategic and operational environment is undergoing transformation. Adhocism must give way to strategic thinking if we are to meet these challenges effectively.
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