6 US aircraft to join Indian Air Force: Air Chief

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Gandhinagar, Feb 11: Half-a-dozen C-130 Hercules, transport aircraft, will soon join the fleet of Indian Air Force (IAF), Chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal F H Major said here today.

''India has signed a military agreement with the US to procure C-130 Hercules transport aircraft, high-tech radar system, surface to air missiles and other equipment,'' he said. Talking to mediapersons at the headquarters of the South-Western Air Command here, Air Chief Marshal Major said that the, ''Procurement of this military equipment was at various stages of agreement between the two countries.'' ''Besides this, the IAF has made a pact with Russia for design, production and development of fifth generation fighter aircraft,'' he said.

''We are in an era of transformation as far as upgradation is concerned. We have a long term plan for acquiring new weapons system. We are also on track of upgrading our existing system,'' the IAF Chief added.

''The Government and the Defence, Ministry have very well understood our requirement and as a result, they are very cooperative and supportive in all our projects,'' he said, adding that the government has assured us that we will get whatever we need in the 11th and 12th Plan Period.'' When asked about the difficulties the IAF pilots and the supporting staff will have in handling US C-130 Hercules military aircraft because in its fleet all planes are of Russian and French make, the Air Chief said that the force's pilots, technicians and logistic personnel will be comfortable in adopting the new US additions as the IAF acquires weapons and technologies from all over the world.''


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