IAF’s Sukhoi-30 MKI (Commons)  |  Photo Credit: Twitter
IAF plans to replenish Sukhoi-30 MKI squadrons which were affected due to crashes
The move is aimed at boosting dwindling strength of squadrons of Sukhoi-30 MKIs and MiG 29s
IAF’s proposal will be taken up in a meeting of Defence Ministry in the next few weeks
New Delhi: A high-level government meeting of the Defence Ministry will take up a proposal of the Indian Air Force (IAF) to procure 33 new combat aircrafts including 21 MiG-29s and 12 Sukhoi 30 MKIs in the next few weeks.
The move is aimed at boosting the diminishing strength of the IAF fighter jet squadrons and achieve parity some of larger neighbouring countries vis-à-vis China.
The 12 Sukhoi 30 MKIs will be used to replace such aircrafts lost in various accidents and help the IAF maintain its fleet of 272 such combat aircrafts.
India placed which placed the order of 272 Su-30 fighters was to be delivered in a period of 10-15 years in batches. The 21 MiG-29s will be procured from Russia which offered these aircrafts to India to help the IAF maintain its requirement of new combat aircrafts.
“As per plans, the MiG-29s on offer would be of the latest upgraded MiG-29s which are already in service with the IAF. The radars and other equipment on the planes would also be of the latest standards,” the news agency ANI quoted unnamed sources as saying.
The talks to acquire the additional Mig-29s are at an advanced stage and the Air Force hopes to close the deal soon. It was reported in February that IAF has sought emergency shipment of 21 Mig-29s to make up for dwindling squadron strength.
The MiG-29s are short-range superiority fighter mean to shoot enemy aircrafts in short and beyond-visual range and are significantly lighter than Sukhoi-30 MKIs. The IAF had carried out extensive checks to ascertain whether the structures of MiG-29s on offer were fit to be operated over a long period of time.
The IAF operates another version of MiG-29 ‘K’ and is the only force to operate such as an aircraft. The Air Force is facing problems regarding the operation of the aircraft as its settings immediately change upon landing on an aircraft carrier.
The IAF has three squadrons of MiG-29s which have constantly been upgraded and considered one of the most dependable aircrafts.