NEW DELHI --- Rafale once inducted into the Indian Air Force would “revolutionise airpower in our sub-continent” but is discussed for the wrong reasons, said Deputy Chief of IAF R. Nambiar on Wednesday. The comments come at a time of claims by the Congress party of financial irregularities in the deal.
“Our future inductions, as is well known and is being discussed for the wrong reasons is the Rafale which is likely to come in from next year onwards, September, into our inventory. This will continue to be procured till we reach the number of 36 by the year 2022,” Air Marshal Nambiar said. He was addressing a seminar on aerospace industry organised by Centre for Air Power Studies and the Confederation of Indian Industry.
On its capability, he added, “The Rafale gives us full spectrum capabilities to a large extent and would revolutionise airpower in our sub-continent, having capabilities which do not exist…”
He highlighted the depleting squadron strength of the IAF which is down to just 31 squadrons and said the “core procurement focus” now is for a multi-role combat fighter.
India has contracted for 36 Rafale jets from France in an inter-governmental agreement at cost of €7.87bn. However, the Congress party has accused the Government of financial irregularities and unduly benefiting certain industrialists. (end of excerpt)
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